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  1. #1
    SewingDeb's Avatar
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    WI - Christopher Thomas, 1, killed, 2yo sister tortured, Milwaukee, 10 Nov 2008

    Christopher Thomas case opens with photos of abuse
    Trial begins for aunt in beatings that killed boy, hurt his 2-year-old sister

    Perhaps in years to come, jurors will forget the horrific story they heard Monday during opening statements in the Christopher Thomas murder trial.

    It is less likely they'll forget the pictures.

    There were six of them, projected on a large screen left of the defendant, Crystal Keith, who slumped in her chair, her arms crossed on the defense table.

    The first photograph was of 13-month-old Christopher shortly after his death on Nov. 11. His head inclines to the right, an angry red welt raised on his forehead. The second is of the back of his head, swollen from the beating police say Keith inflicted on the boy the day before.

    Four were of Christopher's 2-year-old sister.


    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/44308947.html

  2. #2
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    Warning: graphic description of child abuse.

    On tape, aunt recounts abuse
    Jurors hear detectives' interview with Thomas' caregiver the night of beating

    It starts with the sound of handcuffs unlatching and the scraping of chairs on a police station floor: the three-hour recording of Crystal Keith's confession, which prosecutors played for a jury Tuesday in the Christopher Thomas reckless homicide trial.

    Jurors winced, rubbed their faces and shook their heads as they followed along with the 117-page transcript of the interview with detectives.

    Keith, 24, charged with beating 13-month-old Christopher to death and torturing his 2-year-old sister for months, sat at the defense table seemingly unable to lift her head as the recording recounted one horrific incident after another.

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/crime/44423522.html

  3. #3
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    **WARNING _ VERY DISTURBING*

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/crime/44423522.html

    Keith, 24, charged with beating 13-month-old Christopher to death and torturing his 2-year-old sister for months, sat at the defense table seemingly unable to lift her head as the recording recounted one horrific incident after another.

    "So I couldn't feed him and he wouldn't shut up," Keith told Milwaukee police Detectives James Hutchinson and Jeremiah Jacks about the beating she said she gave Christopher on Nov. 10.

    "It made me madder so I started punching him in the legs. And he got louder and then I start slapping him in the face. And I, um, put his legs, I grabbed him by the legs and I put him down on his - you know, how you put a body weight on his head? I did that. And then he was still going and then I slapped him again and that's when I saw his eyes turn over."

    Why isn't she facing the death penalty?
    Say what you mean, mean what you say, but don't say it mean.
    We are all just trying to make sense of an unimaginable crime.

  4. #4
    SewingDeb's Avatar
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    Lovejac,

    I am wondering the same thing. She faces up to 75 years. If she had tortured two adults and killed one of them, she would be facing LWOP or the Death Penalty. It makes me wonder what worth we place on very young, innocent children.

    The uncle is also charged with not protecting Christopher Thomas' sister. Why isn't he charged with not protecting Christopher as well? He was the foster father of both and lived in the household.

  5. #5
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    This makes my heart hurt. I just don't know what to say, bless their hearts.
    "Three things in human life are important: The first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind." ~ Henry James

  6. #6
    SewingDeb's Avatar
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    This article is from February 2009:

    Foster father charged with failing to protect Christopher Thomas' sister

    The man whose wife has been charged with the beating death of 13-month-old Christopher Thomas was charged Friday with failing to report months of abuse endured by Christopher's 2-year-old sister.

    Reginald Keith is the children's uncle. He and his wife, Crystal Keith, became the children's kinship foster parents in June 2008, several months after the state-run Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare removed the siblings from their parents' home and placed them in temporary foster homes.

    Crystal Keith told investigators that she miscarried within days of the children's arrival and that she began hurting the 2-year-old almost immediately.

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/39600132.html

  7. #7
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    I am NOT a violent person, by any means, but, I do believe that if this evil monster was in front of me.....................let's just leave it at that.

    As she is describing the torture she inflicted on these children, it's as if she is describing making dinner.

    I need to leave this thread for a while, I'm afraid I might lose it and say something that will get me banned!

    God Bless the sister, I pray she is in the care of a loving, wonderful family.
    Say what you mean, mean what you say, but don't say it mean.
    We are all just trying to make sense of an unimaginable crime.

  8. #8
    SewingDeb's Avatar
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    Kat, it hurts my heart too. One of the articles lists the visits by DCF...they were going to the home regularly up to 11 days before Christopher's death and reported no signs of physical abuse. How could the miss the injuries to his sister?

    This case is reportedly a catalyst for change in the department. I hope they make some real changes that will head off deaths.

  9. #9
    SewingDeb's Avatar
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    This is from April 9th:

    Woman charged in child's death testifies she did not understand her rights

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/42748292.html

  10. #10
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    New child welfare agency will hire almost all of La Causa staff

    Integrated Family Services, the agency that will replace La Causa this month and provide services for abused or neglected children and their families in the southern third of Milwaukee County, has hired virtually the entire La Causa staff, including the supervisor who was in charge of the Christopher Thomas case, agency officials said Friday.

    That supervisor, however, will be in an administrative position and will not work directly with children or families, said Ann Umhoefer, chief administrative officer for St. Aemilian-Lakeside.

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/44202302.html


  11. #11
    SewingDeb's Avatar
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    This is from last year:

    Another couple tried to help abused baby
    Grandparents say agency rebuffed them

    Two months before police say 13-month-old Christopher L. Thomas Jr. was beaten to death by his foster mother and his 2-year-old-sister was rescued from months of torture, the state approved placing the children in their biological grandmother's home, their grandfather said Monday.

    The children, however, were never moved.

    and

    Altogether, three couples have now said they tried to adopt Christopher or have him and his sister placed in their homes after they were taken from their birth mother in March. Two of the couples have said they alerted the child welfare bureau to possible abuse.



    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/35043119.html
    Last edited by SewingDeb; 05-06-2009 at 10:09 AM. Reason: Add information

  12. #12
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    This is also from last year:

    Boy who was abused laid to rest
    Grief succumbs to anger as family, friends of boy's parents clash; father injured

    The emotional funeral of Christopher L. Thomas Jr. erupted in violence Wednesday as family and friends of the child's mother and father clashed with each other in bitter frustration.

    Christopher's foster mother, Crystal P. Keith, was charged last week with beating the 13-month-old boy to death and with torturing his 2-year-old sister, who remains hospitalized. Keith is married to the brother of the child's father, also named Christopher Thomas.

    Thomas, 22, who is serving a work release term on a drug conviction, attended the service with several friends and family. He sat in the first row of the Serenity Funeral Home chapel near the baby's 23-year-old mother, Candace Glover.

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/34747279.html

  13. #13
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    I'm speechless. Nothing that could be done to this woman that would befit the crime she's committed. Dragging her behind a truck on her way to hell wouldn't be enough.

    JMO

  14. #14
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by SewingDeb View Post
    This is also from last year:

    Boy who was abused laid to rest
    Grief succumbs to anger as family, friends of boy's parents clash; father injured

    The emotional funeral of Christopher L. Thomas Jr. erupted in violence Wednesday as family and friends of the child's mother and father clashed with each other in bitter frustration.

    Christopher's foster mother, Crystal P. Keith, was charged last week with beating the 13-month-old boy to death and with torturing his 2-year-old sister, who remains hospitalized. Keith is married to the brother of the child's father, also named Christopher Thomas.

    Thomas, 22, who is serving a work release term on a drug conviction, attended the service with several friends and family. He sat in the first row of the Serenity Funeral Home chapel near the baby's 23-year-old mother, Candace Glover.

    http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/34747279.html
    I find it hard to be sympathetic to Christopher's parents. They failed him and his sister, just as child services did.

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