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Monday, January 18, 2016

The Kayleigh Slusher Murder Case

     In 2014, three-year-old Kayleigh Slusher lived with her mother, Sara Krueger, 23, and Krueger's 26-year-old boyfriend, Ryan Scott Warner. The couple and the toddler resided in Unit 7 at the Royal Garden apartment complex in east Napa, California.

     Over the past five years, Warner had been in and out of bay area jails for a variety of crimes including assault and possession of drugs. When his former girlfriend, Ashley Owens, refused to abort their child, Warner had sent her a series of threatening text messages that read: "I hope the kid dies," "I will scalp you," and "I will bust out your teeth with a pipe." Warner was obviously a violent man who didn't like children, or women.

     Since June 2012, Napa police officers had been called to the Krueger apartment more than a dozen times on reports of domestic disturbance, theft, vandalism, and unwanted persons. By any standard, Unit 7 at the Royal Garden complex was a dangerous place to raise a child. And a lot of relatives and neighbors knew this. The only people who seemed oblivious to the situation were the police and the child welfare authorities. Unfortunately, these were the only people with the power to protect Kayleigh Slusher.

     On January 27, 2014, a neighbor called the Napa police and requested a welfare check at Unit 7. According to the caller, Krueger and her boyfriend were using drugs and not feeding the little girl. They were also making a commotion and fighting with each other. Police officers visited the apartment that day and didn't find drugs or evidence of narcotics use. The officers also observed Kayleigh who seemed okay. The officers did not notify child protective services. They left things as they found them.

     A Krueger relative, worried about the little girl, called the authorities two days later. On January 29, police officers returned to the apartment, examined the girl, and left. This would be the last day of Kayleigh's short life.

     At 11:50 AM on Saturday, February 1, 2014, a police dispatcher in the bay area city of Richmond received an anonymous call from a man who had "something to get off his chest" about Sara Kreuger and her boyfriend. According to the tipster, the boyfriend, a guy named Brian or Ryan, had done something bad to Krueger's daughter.

     That day, two police officers arrived at Unit 7, knocked on the door, and didn't get a response. A neighbor informed the officers that the day before, January 31, 2014, a man and woman, presumably the occupants of the unit, left the apartment. The little girl was not with them. Using a key they had acquired from the apartment complex manager, the officers entered the dwelling.

     In one of the bedrooms the officers found Kayleigh in bed covered in blankets up to her neck. Next to her body lay a doll. She was dead, and cold to the touch. She also had bruises around her eyes and blood in her nostrils. (A forensic pathologist would determine the cause of death to be "multiple blunt impact injuries to the head, torso, and extremities." The pathologist also found evidence of prior child abuse and neglect. Manner of death: Homicide.)

     The following day, February 2, police arrested Krueger and Warner at a BART station in El Cerrito, California. According to the murdered girl's mother, she found Kayleigh dead when she returned to the apartment on the afternoon of January 30, 2014. Krueger said she placed the body into a plastic bag and stored it for awhile in a freezer before tucking the little corpse into the bed.

     Sara Krueger and Ryan Warner were booked into the Napa County Jail on charges of murder and felony assault of a child causing death. If convicted as charged, they faced up to 25 years to life in prison.

     On February 25, 2014, at the murder suspects' arraignment before Napa Superior Court Judge Mark Boessenecker, the couple pleaded not guilty. The judge denied both suspects bail.

     In June 2015, the dead child's father, grandmother and grandfather filed a lawsuit in a San Francisco federal court against the Napa Police Department and Napa County Child Welfare Services for failing to investigate reports of child abuse.

     As of January 2016, Sara Krueger and Ryan Warner were still waiting to be tried for murder. 

11 comments:

  1. What wasn't mentioned here was the fact that the article titled, Judge denies discussion of Kayleigh homicide, on February 05, 2014 the Napa County Superior Court judge told a Napa County attorney representing Child Welfare Services no information on the case could be disclosed to the media in response to a petition filed with the court to release information in Kayleigh's CPS file.

    Linda Canan, Child Welfare Services director, said her agency had wanted to talk to the public. “We, in Child Welfare Services, want to be open and transparent with the community. We did nothing wrong,” she said Wednesday. “I really want to reassure the community that they have a good quality Child Welfare program.”

    They can't talk to the public and inform them about anything in that case file except with family members. They want to breach confidentiality in order to protect their so called reputation. Why is it that you can look up some court records with cases involving children such as, guardianship's, child support, visitation orders, and modification orders. However if it's a CPS case, these can't be pulled up. You have to go into the city clerks office and show an ID in order to get copies of your court records, which they charge you 50 cents per page. They both involve minors but only CPS cases are not open to the public. Why is that? They claim they want to be transparent with the community. Then why are parents told by their attorney that they are not allowed to even show their court papers to their own mother because they are confidential? And why is the public defender, Colleen Clark, for almost all mom's with CPS cases that can't afford an attorney a stakeholder for CPS and even participated in their Self Improvement Plan (SIP) Report? CPS is clearly out of line here for even making such a request to the court. I'm guessing they really don't want anyone to come poking around in their files because if they did, they might have more questions to answer up to.

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  2. why is it taking so long to hang the bitch and her psychotic sidekick?

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  3. At video mark 4:56/6:34, Mr. Lieberstein was questioned by reporters in front of the courthouse about whether or not they were going to seek the death penalty in this case. Napa's District Attorney is explaining how they need special allegations in order to be able to seek the death penalty.
    He stated the following: "If there were evidence of sexual assault based on forensic evidence would that be a special circumstance, the answer is yes that would be a special circumstance."
    Video Link: https://youtu.be/AgXtA5-zt5Q

    Krueger and Warner are charged with murder with a special allegation of inflicting torture and assault on a child causing death. However, Gary Lieberstein told Napa County Superior Court that they are not going to seek the death penalty in this case.
    Lieberstein did not explain in court why prosecution was not seeking the death penalty. Napa courts have imposed a gag order on all the attorneys and investigators involved in the case, forbidding them to discuss the matter publicly outside of court.
    NapaValley Register: Prosecutor: No death penalty in Slusher case
    http://napavalleyregister.com/news/...

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  4. Can anyone explain to me why this case has dragged on so long? The event occurred in 2014, it's not announced the defendants will stand trial until November 2016, and I have yet to see a trial date set. What am I missing please? Thank you.

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  5. Ha. A lot if times these child killers walk around for years before before going to trial.
    The Welfare departments always try and exonerate themselves from anywrong doing

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  6. They just finished picking of the jury, the trial is scheduled to begin May 1st

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  7. They are monsters. This crime against this child is horrendous. If justice does not come in this life, I hope they both burn in hell.

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