Charles Stecker recalls the night in 1967 as it had just happened last night. The now 48 year old mans was 4 the night his brother was abused. Eddie his younger brother was 2 as he lay in a bed a few feet away from Eddie he saw his foster mother enter the room because Eddie was crying horribly, charles states most likely in pain from being beaten by their foster mother Lillian Bedford. Lillian had left the room to use the phone and returned this is when charles saw the unforgettable death of his brother.
Charles states lillian returned aggravated over Eddies persistant crying. Lillian picked up a bowling pin from a childs plastic set and swung it at him yelling profanities as she hit Eddie in the back of the head. Charles laid in his bed and watched this happening. Several newspapers reported a second blow to the head that sent Eddie toppling out of the crib where he bounced his head off the floor. Charles says he jumped and ran to aide Eddie however there was blood running from his nose and ear.He had a brain hemmorage. Lillian then began beating on Charles to get him to let go of Eddie. She finally jerked him by his arm breaking the bones in Charles arms to remove him from holding Eddie.
Edward John Stecker was pronounced dead at Germantown Hospital Febuary 28,1967 at 10:30 P.M.
The death certificate lists the cause of death as “subdural hemorrhage, bilateral.” Under “circumstances of significant injury,” one word is typed in all caps: BEATEN. Eddie’s funeral at St. Leo’s Roman Catholic Church in Tacony was widely reported. He was buried hugging a teddy bear—a gift from his big brother—in a small white casket in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. The city’s Welfare Department paid for the funeral and burial plot.
There is not much of a mystery Three adults in a 720 ft home and a child is beaten to death! Little Julliette was 2 years old when she lost her life to child abuse! She was a twin as the years have passed no charges have ever been filed. Jullieittes family struggles with the officials trying to get justice for this baby. You do not hear Julliettes story on the national news, like several others she is swept under the rug. The lack of action from law enforcement and prosecution is repulsive someone brutally beat this child and has never face the consequences. Her twin Jaelyn is a reminder of what the family misses out on everyday however the holidays are a very cold reality that this baby is no longer with us due to child abuse.
Julliette was only 2 years old and lived in a home with her mother and two male companions when her life was taken. The three adults present have never been charged I am sure if they were all charged the story of what happened would come out. I can not understand how the system has failed these children. The mother first and foremost at best failed to protect Julliette and at worst participated in the abuse that caused her life to end. Any person in that home should have been arrested for failur to protect and report child abuse in my opinion!
Jaelyn is Jullietes twin sister who now celebrates the holiday's with out her twin. The family has a huge hole in there their live's now with Julliette being gone made worse by the refusal to take action against the adult that have done this to their family. They have contacted many officials and no one can resolve this crisis seems far fetched. That not one of the powers that be can step up and arrest the murderer or murderers. Even if they never laid their hands on this child if they were in that home they are just as responsible for her death for not contacting law enforcement.
Julliette's life was taken July 2008 I can only pray for changes in the laws that this never happens to another family. The loss of a child would be horrible and then the system compounding the pain by lack of action against the child abuser/ abusers.
Vincent Hill was 19 months old when his life was brutally taken by people who were in charge of taking care of him. March 2010 Vincent was killed however 2 weeks prior a hotline call had been made in concern for his welfare! Due to wording of the report the operator decided it did not warrant an investigation. No one went to check on this little boy, and for two more weeks he was tortured. The neighbors had heard his screams of pain all the way out to the street while he was inside the home being hurt. Still not one person intervened until the day newton county sheriffs were called in on suspicious death of a child. As they investigated they realized there had been a report made to child protective earlier in the month prior to Vincent's death.
The Harvey County Sheriff's Department confirms someone called an SRS abuse hotline more than two months before 19-month-old Vincent Hill was allegedly beaten to death. But Newton SRS and Harvey County law enforcement say they were never informed of the call.
The call came in from a couple who lived in the same duplex as Hill, his mother, Katheryn Nycole Dale, and her boyfriend, Chadd Carr. Dale and Carr are both charged in the case.
"Nothing ever gets done until it's too late, and unfortunately, it's too late," said Jason Monarez, the victim's neighbor.
Vincent Hill's father describes the little boy as happy and always smiling.
"He's never going to be able to play catch with me, I'm never going to teach him how to learn how to fish," said Ricky Hill, Vincent's father. "I''m not going to get to see him do anything."
Now, Ricky Hill wonders if he would have gotten the chance to see those things if social services had further investigated a call it received on January 20th, two months before Vincent's death.
"We tried to stop it, we tried... me and my girlfriend both," said Monarez. "You could just hear through the wall, the child screaming."
So Monarez' girlfriend called an SRS abuse hotline. But the center dismissed the call saying it didn't indicate there was any harm taking place to the child. The last sentence of the report reads, "This completes the initial assessment with no further action needed."
"It just makes me angry, really, to know that i tried and it wasn't taken seriously," said Jessica Link, who placed the call.
Since the call stopped at the call center, Newton SRS says it never got word of the suspected abuse.
"If they would have had the report, they probably would have notified us, and something would have gotten done," said Harvey County Sheriff T. Walton.
SRS will not comment about specific cases, but did release this statement on the process of investigating calls to its hotline;
"SRS receives reports of alleged abuse and neglect through our Kansas Protection Report Center, 1-800-922-5330. In State fiscal year 2009 SRS received 56,207 reports of alleged abuse or neglect. Of those, 49% or 27,340, cases were assigned for further investigation."
"Intake workers receive protective services training to elicit specific information about the situation. Information requested is focused on the extent of the situation, circumstances of the situation, child’s functioning, parenting practices and caregiver function, in addition to information regarding the child’s age, person alleged to have caused harm to the child, where the child is located, other individuals or agencies who may have information regarding the incident and the availability of a non-abusing adult to protect the child from further harm."
"The information gathered through the intake process is then provided to a licensed social worker to review and determine whether the incident requires further investigation. This decision is based on specific safety and risk factors, including but not limited to: seriousness of the incident, prior agency involvement with the family, and seriousness of injury to child."
"All reports assigned for further investigation involving allegations of maltreatment of child must be investigated within either a 24 hour or 72 hour timeframe, depending on the nature of the allegation. Situations requiring a 24 hour response include, but are not limited to: life threatening situation, sexual abuse with the alleged perpetrator in the home, child in protective custody, or a child with current visible injuries."
"Certain reports, not alleging maltreatment, may be investigated within 20 working days. An example of this type of case would be truancy."
A Newton man will spend 20 years and one month in prison for the death of 19-month-old Vincent Hill. A Harvey county judge sentenced Chad Carr Tuesday, and made no changes to the plea agreement.
Back in November, Carr entered a plea in which he pleaded guilty to murder in the second degree, three counts of aggravated battery, and one count of abuse of a child.
Those charges were reduced from first degree murder and several more serious battery and abuse charges.
"There are no winners in this situation, there is just pain," said Richard Hill, Vincent's father.
Harvey County Attorney David Yoder called Vincent Hill's death, the worst case of child abuse he's ever prosecuted. Medical reports show that the child had a broken leg, broken shoulder and died of suffocation and blunt force trauma.
"Give me 5 seconds to go back in time and change all this," Hill said. "I didn't know (about the abuse), I didn't get to see him that often at the very end of it."
Hill added, "He was a great kid, he always smiled and he was always good, I got lucky."
Carr was dating the toddler's mother, Katheryn Nycole Dale, at the time of the death. Dale was also sent to prison for more than three years after pleading no contest to abusing and endangering the child.
NEWTON — Katheryn Nycole Dale couldn't speak through her tears when a judge asked her Thursday whether she had anything to say about the abuse leading up to the death of her toddler.
The 21-year-old mother sobbed loudly as a Harvey County deputy led her to jail to catch a bus for prison, where a judge sentenced her to serve more than three years.
David Yoder, Harvey County attorney, said Dale's complicity with the abuse of her child, along with her own mistreatment of the boy, led to the March 27 death of her son, 19-month-old Vincent Hill.
"She, as his mother, is the one person who could have taken proper actions to protect this child and possibly prevented this death from happening," Yoder said.
Dale pleaded no contest in July to child abuse and aggravated child endangerment.
Harvey County District Judge Joe Dickinson gave Dale the maximum sentence allowed by law. She could be out of prison in less than three years with good-time credit, Dickinson said.
Under the plea agreement, Dale has agreed to testify in the upcoming trial of her live-in boyfriend, Chad Carr. He has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial on first-degree murder, aggravated battery and child abuse in Vincent's death.
Greg Barker, Dale's attorney, said she'd been taking parenting classes, as he argued for probation. Dale also has a 7-month old child.
"Clearly, she's a victim," Barker said. "I don't know how much more punishment a court could render a person, after they've had their baby murdered."
But Dale admitted to investigators that she had poked a fork into Vincent's mouth while trying to get him to eat, Yoder said, and that she had slapped him on several occasions.
"She described it as 'popping him,' " Yoder said.
On the day he died, Dale left Vincent alone for the day with Carr, knowing he had hit the boy in the past and stuffed a rag or shirt in his mouth to stop his crying, witnesses said.
"This child had been systematically abused over a period of time," Yoder said.
A month before Vincent's death, a neighbor phoned a national hotline for abused children, saying she could hear the boy screaming. But no one passed that information along to local authorities.
An autopsy revealed Vincent died from a brain injury most likely caused by suffocation and multiple signs of blunt-force trauma.
Jacey Lopez, Carr's ex-wife, and her family said afterward they couldn't believe he was capable of harming Vincent. They have two children together, ages 4 and 5.
"He never touched my kids," Lopez said.
In a separate case, Carr also faces charges of possessing child pornography.