A mother and her fiance charged for killing her four-year-old daughter who died after being put to bed in a duct-tape swaddle.
Unfortunately, the situation would get so much worse when police showed up to investigate what had happened — and now, the little girl’s mother and her fiance are behind bars after authorities made a second horrific discovery about the unfortunate child.
Kelly Ballinger, 33-year-old and Matthew Longenecker, 34-year-old have been arrested and charged with the murder of Ballinger’s 4-year-old daughter Deseray. Police and an emergency medical team arrived at the residence at approximately 5 a.m., Sunday, July 9, 2017, to find Deseray unresponsive and not breathing. Sadly, the little girl was pronounced dead after CPR was administered to no avail. According to reports from The Sun.
According to Kalamazoo Public Safety Detective Sheila Goodell, the girl’s body was bruised from prior mistreatment and that the girl had been restrained at night over the past couple of weeks. The restraints included wrapping the girl in blankets and then duct taping her numerous times which would severely restrict her breathing.
“The restraining included wrapping the victim to form a makeshift swaddle. The victim would then have duct tape wrapped around her entire body, numerous times the victim’s face would be covered,” said Goodell. Investigators say both Kelly Ballinger and Matthew Longenecker admitted to doing this, and detectives also found text messages on the couple’s cell phones that corroborated the evidence.
According to local news source WWMT, Longenecker’s mother, who had been allowing her son and Ballinger to stay at her home with three children, called 911 shortly before 5 a.m. that morning to report that Deseray was not breathing. The two other children have reportedly been removed from the home and placed into protective custody.
Kalamazoo Cpt. Shannon Bagley told WWMT, “I’m a parent. Anytime kids are involved I have a soft spot. Of course, it’s a horrific thing. Right now, we’re still shoring up some additional information and continuing an investigation to kind of exhaust all avenues before we present to the prosecutor.”
Both Ballinger and Longenecker were arraigned in Kalamazoo County District Court on Tuesday, July 11, 2017. The judge decided that both of these animals will be held without bail until their next hearing on August 1st. They are being charged with felony murder and first-degree child abuse, which could mean life in prison if convicted.
There is a special place in hell for these two individuals. After what they admitted to doing to 4-year-old Deseray, they deserve the death penalty. It is truly hard to imagine that anyone would do something like this to a child, but this story proves that some people can become so demented that they are willing to commit heinous acts like this. It is truly sad that Deseray had to pay the ultimate price for her parent’s evil behavior, but thank God, this little girl is in heaven, where these monsters can never harm her again.