GUILTY NY - Jerica Rhodes, 7, stabbed to death, Highland Falls, 27 Jan 2005

Discussion in 'Recently Sentenced and Beyond' started by englishleigh, Jan 27, 2005.

  1. englishleigh

    englishleigh Authentic Southern Belle

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    http://www.newsday.com/news/nationw...,0,2788640.story?coll=sns-ap-nation-headlines

    Girl, 7, Found Stabbed to Death at School

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    By MICHAEL VIRTANEN
    Associated Press Writer

    January 27, 2005, 4:57 PM EST

    HIGHLAND FALLS, N.Y. -- A 7-year-old girl was found stabbed to death at a parochial school Thursday, and the son of a former village police chief is among those being questioned.

    The girl's body was discovered about 75 minutes after classes started Thursday morning at Sacred Heart of Jesus School, police Chief Peter Miller said. It was not immediately clear when or where the child was killed.

    Parents rushed to pick up their children after learning of the slaying.

    Police, who did not identify the slain student, said they were questioning several people in the death, including Chris Rhodes, 27, the son of former Highland Falls police Chief Linwood Rhodes Jr. Authorities did not disclose Chris Rhodes' connection to the girl or the names of anyone else being questioned.

    A woman who answered the phone number listed for Linwood Rhodes declined to comment.

    The school, run by the Roman Catholic archdiocese of New York, has 240 students from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade.

    The school will remain closed Friday, but counselors will be available to help students and family members, said diocese spokesman Joseph Zwilling. Each school family was to be called Thursday evening, he said.

    "We recognize the impact this can have on the broader community as well," Zwilling said.

    Highland Falls is near West Point, about 50 miles up the Hudson River from New York City.
     
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  3. Sassygerl

    Sassygerl Active Member

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    :( :( :( :( This kind of thing makes me so sick and sad!
     
  4. VespaElf

    VespaElf Little Miss Showcase(runner-up)

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    Just heard on the radio her Father has been arrested and charged with the stabbing!! :eek: :furious:
     
  5. englishleigh

    englishleigh Authentic Southern Belle

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    I just read an article this morning that said the dad wasn't a suspect. :banghead: What the heck is the matter with parents????? How can they do this to their own babies????? :furious:
     
  6. Casshew

    Casshew Former Member

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    How could he do that? to his own little girl :(
     
  7. kato

    kato New Member

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    How utterly sad. Sick *astard!
     
  8. VespaElf

    VespaElf Little Miss Showcase(runner-up)

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  9. oceanblueeyes

    oceanblueeyes Active Member

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    This is so puzzling... from what was on Greta..........this little girl was suppose to be this father's life.........she was everything to him. He is saying he did not harm her but who knows .....but why would he? He took her to school...if he was going to kill her for some unknown reason why would he do it at school? No one saw him kill her...from what Greta said.

    On Greta I think this man's father is the Police Chief of that town. The little girl lived with her grandfather the P.C. The father took her to school everyday and picked her up.

    The grandfather said that he has had Jerico ever since she was 5 months old.

    Such a tragedy and she was so pretty.

    Oh well........I hope we hear more about what happened and why a father would do such a terrible thing.

    Ocean
     
  10. oceanblueeyes

    oceanblueeyes Active Member

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    Yes it is a weird case..........and they are charging him with second degree? Why second? Strange.

    Ocean
     
  11. IdahoMom

    IdahoMom Former Member

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    I have looked for pictures of her and haven't found any yet. Do you have a link to one? Thanks in advance~
     
  12. oceanblueeyes

    oceanblueeyes Active Member

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    No IdahoMom......I dont.....have you tried Greta's site...that is where I saw her picture (on Greta's show)......she was adorable. :blowkiss:

    Ocean
     
  13. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Man convicted in slaying of girl in his custody

    GOSHEN, N.Y. A 28-year-old man was convicted of killing a 7-year-old girl whom he had treated as his daughter.

    Christopher Rhodes of Highland Falls was convicted by an Orange County jury of second-degree murder today.


    The body of Jerica Rhodes was found in the boys bathroom of the Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Highland Falls on January 27th. She had been stabbed multiple times.


    Prosecutors obtained an indictment against Christopher Rhodes based partly on D-N-A evidence they said linked him to the crime. Though Rhodes had custody of the girl, further D-N-A analysis determined he was not her biological father.

    http://www.wcax.com/Global/story.asp?S=4155120&nav=4QcS
     
  14. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Some Defense Testimony from the Trial:

    defense witnesses in his Orange County Court trial Friday.
    Rhodes is accused of murdering his daughter Jerica back on January 27 th at the Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Highland Falls.

    Defense attorney Sol Lesser called his client to the stand yesterday afternoon to give his account of what he did the day seven-year-old Jerica was murdered, and to talk about his experiences while being held at the county jail in Goshen over the past 10 months.

    Rhodes contradicted almost every statement given by police investigators who were present at his house on 72½ Mountain Avenue, and at the Village of Highland Falls Police Department, on the day of the murder.

    Rhodes made several claims that police threw him on the ground shortly after showing up at his house when they returned from St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital, and that he wasn’t told he was being arrested, when he said he felt he was. Rhodes also claimed that he was mistreated at the police station. He said he was denied a phone call several times, denied a visit to the bathroom several times; and when he did go use the facilities, an officer waited outside the bathroom for him.

    Rhodes was also denied his right to leave the police station even after police told him he was not under arrest.

    More:
    http://www.midhudsonnews.com/News/Rhodes_trial-19Nov05.htm
     
  15. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Some Prosecution Testimony from the Trial
    The defense in the Christopher Rhodes murder trial came to a slow, sharp turn this morning as one of their key witnesses told them that she wouldn’t be continuing her testimony today. They also told the court that they will be calling their client as a witness in his own trial later this afternoon.

    Rhodes is standing trial for the murder of Jerica Rhodes, a seven-year-old girl he raised as his own daughter.

    Tammy Holmes, Christopher’s fiancée, told defense attorney Sol Lesser that she would be pleading the Fifth Amendment to all questions she would be asked by the prosecution due to fear that she would incriminate herself.

    She failed to be specific in her reasoning, so the judge ordered her to be held in custody at the courthouse until she retained counsel.

    Lesser called private investigator Ferrell Tannenbaum to the stand in Holmes’ absence to testify on his observations of a video obtained from a True Value Hardware store which he claimed shows the defendant’s vehicle on Main Street in Highland Falls around 8:20 a.m.

    Lesser claimed earlier in the trial that his client was plainly just going about his normal routine of dropping his daughter off at school, then heading back home to 72 ½ Mountain Avenue.


    More:
    http://www.midhudsonnews.com/News/Rhodes_AM-18Nov05.htm
     
  16. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    I think I will post the rest of this in the trial forum...
    it's all so sad :(
    I just saw the updates today and found this thread and wanted
    to make sure everyone knew.
    There's justice now for Jerica Rhodes.

    Prayers for her and God rest her sweet little soul
     
  17. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Upstate Man Guilty Of Killing Girl, 7, Who Considered Him Her Dad

    GOSHEN, N.Y. -- A man accused of killing a 7-year-old girl whom she considered her father was found guilty Tuesday of stabbing the child to death.

    Christopher Rhodes, 28, of Highland Falls was convicted by an Orange County jury of second-degree murder, the Times Herald-Record of Middletown reported on its Web site.


    The body of Jerica Rhodes was found in the boys bathroom of the Sacred Heart of Jesus School she attended in Highland Falls on Jan. 27. She had been stabbed multiple times, police said.


    Prosecutors obtained a Feb. 2 murder indictment against Christopher Rhodes based partly on DNA evidence they said linked him to the crime. Though Rhodes had custody of the girl, further DNA analysis determined he was not her biological father.


    He faces 31½ years to life in prison when he's sentenced Jan. 4, the newspaper said.

    More: http://www.wnbc.com/news/5384235/detail.html?rss=ny&psp=news
     
  18. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Trial of man accused of killing his daughter begins

    [​IMG]
    Rhodes, left, and Jerica The trial of Christopher Rhodes, 28, the Highland Falls man accused of killing his seven-year-old daughter Jerica last January 27th, begins today in Orange County Court.

    District Attorney Frank Phillips said jury selection was held last week. That selection took three days with both sides in the case meeting with Judge Jeffrey Berry on Friday to discuss evidentiary matters.



    http://www.midhudsonnews.com/News/Rhodes_trial-31Oct05.htm
     
  19. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Jerica Rhodes murder case gets under way

    Opening arguments in the Jerica Rhodes murder trial were presented at the Orange County Courthouse in Goshen this morning. The father of the victim, Christopher Rhodes, is on trial for the murder of the seven-year-old. Jerica was not his biological daughter; however, he raised her.

    Assistant District Attorney David Byrne told jurors he intends to create a case against Rhodes with evidence based on a blood trail. Blood was found on several pieces of clothing owned by Rhodes, including a sweatshirt, a pair of shoes, and a dark leather jacket, he said. Samples taken from these pieces of evidence contain traces DNA from both the girl and her father.


    More: http://www.midhudsonnews.com/News/Rhodes_trial1-31Oct05.htm
    In the defense’s opening statement, Attorney Sol Lesser didn’t deny that Jerica’s blood was present on some of the evidence, but contested that Jerica oftened used his clothes as a pillow or blanket, which would explain the traces. Lesser argued that trace can come from other sources than blood, including saliva.
     
  20. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Nov. 1

    Highland Falls murder case begins with photos of young victim

    [​IMG]
    Jerica Rhodes The prosecution yesterday started painting a picture for the Orange County Court jury of a gruesome murder of seven-year-old Jerica Rhodes. Christopher Rhodes, the man who raised her as his own daughter, although not his biological offspring is charged with stabbing her to death after he took her to Highland Falls school last January.

    Within the first few minutes of calling their first witness, the prosecution displayed pictures of the crime scene to the nine-man, two-woman jury.

    There were mixed reactions from the jury, but only one from Christopher Rhodes. As the pictures were placed on the projector, he could barely bring himself to glance at them.

    Just a short 10 minutes after calling Sacred Heart of Jesus teacher Mary Wigboldy to the stand, prosecutor David Byrne presented several photographs of the victim’s body while still in the school’s bathroom stall where she was found unconscious. The pictures revealed many of the 16 stab wounds, along with a gash along her forehead.

    Wigboldy, who also had an eight-year-old child attending the school at the time of the incident, was called to provide her account of that morning. She was one of the first responders to the call for help in the boys’ bathroom from the janitor who found Jerica.

    Byrne also called school Athletic Coordinator John Hurley, who ran to the bathroom shortly after Wigboldy. Hurley stated that when he arrived in the bathroom, Wigboldy had started CPR on the little girl, and that he began to help her time. He recalled that there was little hope for the girl, given the amount of blood that was spread on the floor and the walls.



    More: http://www.midhudsonnews.com/News/Rhodes_trial-01Nov05.htm
     
  21. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Christopher Rhodes trial continues today in Orange County Court

    The prosecution called the janitor who initially found Jerica Rhodes’ body in the bathroom stall of Sacred Heart of Jesus to the stand this morning as the murder trial of Christopher Rhodes is in day two in Orange County Court in Goshen.

    Ramon Vazquez, who has been employed by the school for almost nine years now, was the first to discover the unconscious body of seven-year-old Jerica last January 27th at the school. He said he discovered her around 9:10 or 9:15 that morning.

    Prosecutor David Byrne used his testimony to show that Christopher Rhodes was present during the time frame of Jerica’s death. Although the defense pointed out that Vazquez wasn’t wearing a watch that day and maintained he had no way of verifying the exact time he saw Rhodes, Vazquez claimed he knew the time due to morning routines at the school and the start of the Jog-a-thon which was going on that day.

    Defense Attorney Sol Lesser also attempted to taint the witness’ character with claims that he is illegally in the United States. Vazquez responded by saying that he doesn’t wish to answer that question without a lawyer.

    At that point, Judge Jeffrey Berry ordered the jury out of the courtroom to avoid any formation of opinion of the witness by the jury.



    More: http://www.midhudsonnews.com/News/Rhodes1-01Nov05.htm
     

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