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 Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.

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PostSubject: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Thu Oct 01, 2009 7:28 pm

Kristina Hepp-died at 4 by the hands of her own father.
This is her mother's myspace link-

http://www.myspace.com/muddinghuntingfishing


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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Thu Oct 01, 2009 7:28 pm

Kristina Hepp: Custody cases not clear cut

While the investigation continues, into the alleged child abuse death of 4-year-old Kristina Hepp, her mother, step-grandparents and others say they are left wondering why Kristina’s father was awarded custody of the little girl. Kristina’s mother and step grandparents are asking the Governor’s office to order an investigation into the events leading up to Kristina’s death.

Early Monday morning Kristina was found dead inside the Waccasassa mobile home where she had lived since February with her father, Matthew Roland, 23, and his girlfriend, Chelci Folds. Roland, an unemployed sheet metal worker, has been charged with aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter of a child in Kristina’s death.

The criminal history of Roland includes a string of arrests in Gilchrist County on drug charges and on charges of domestic violence and burglary.

The interesting part, Roland’s only conviction as an adult was for possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana. Adjudication was withheld in two cases, and charges were dropped in three other cases.

Even if Roland had been convicted of every charge filed against him, Florida law would not have prohibited him from having custody of his daughter, according to Arlene Huszar, family court manager for Florida’s Eighth Judicial Circuit.

Huszar said many factors are considered when a judge decides who should have custody of a child, including criminal records of the adults involved in a case.

“A criminal record would not automatically preclude someone from being a guardian or a time-sharing parent,” Huszar said, noting that the Florida Legislature passed a law that took effect last fall replacing the term custody with time sharing. “It’s up to a judge to weigh that information. There is no black or white on ‘yes, you can’ and ‘no, you can’t’ when it comes to these cases.”

The one similarity in all Florida child custody cases is that they must go through a court to be legally enforceable, said Becky O’Brien, spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Children and Families in the Gainesville region. Custody decisions happen in many ways. The majority of the time, they are decided without the involvement of DCF. Custody is a matter routinely taken up by courts in all types of circumstances - civil actions as a result of divorce, or in family court or through a dependency court action.

Florida laws do not allow public access to court records of custody disputes, so exactly what happened in Kristina’s case could not be determined, and Kristina’s mother, Elizabeth Brown, 21, of Orlando, said Wednesday she could not explain why Kristina’s father and not Brown had been given custody of Kristina.

Wednesday, Kristina’s mother and step-grandparents released a statement asking that Gov. Charlie Crist “look into these events and bring a purpose to Kristina’s tragic death.”

The statement also said that, “As we piece together the facts leading up to this tragic event, it is evident that this death should not have happened. We can surmise by the facts in this case that the system has failed her. Her untimely death is another reminder that the Courts and Florida’s Division of Children and Families are not serving our families.”

Family members said Wednesday that they had tried to question the advisability of Roland having custody of Kristina. They said they tried to contact the DCF office in Trenton, unaware that the protocol was to call the state child abuse hot line.

DCF involvement always starts with a call to the state child abuse hot line and when the hot line accepts a report for investigation, that gives the department the legal authority to take action. The department is awarded - by law - great powers with respect to children and families, and so it has to start that way, so we are on legal ground. Sometimes law enforcement makes calls to the hot line.

Brown, Kristina’s mother, said her custody dispute with Roland began in 2008 after it was established that Roland was Kristina’s father.

Brown said that, over the past year, Kristina had lived with her twice in Kentucky, had spent some time with her mother in Orlando and most recently time with Roland. A medical examiner and an emergency medical technician who went to the home on Monday reported that the pre-kindergarten student suffered multiple traumatic injuries.

While being questioned about Kristina’s injuries and death, Roland reportedly told deputies that he had hit Kristina with a belt on Sunday afternoon and that he “got into it” with his daughter on Sunday night and spanked her.

Roland is being held at the Gilchrist County Jail. The Gilchrist Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information about the case to contact the Sheriff’s Office at 352- 463-3410

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Thu Oct 01, 2009 7:29 pm

TRENTON — A 4-year-old girl who died on Monday, apparently at the hands of her father, might have survived her injuries had she received medical help, a medical examiner says.


This photo of 4-year-old
Kristina Hepp was taken on April 12.
The four yearold girl died at her father's home on Monday morning.
COURTESY OF KRISTINA HEPP'S FAMILY

Medical Examiner Dr. Martha Burt, who went to the Waccasassa mobile home where Kristina Hepp was found dead early Monday, told investigators from the Gilchrist County Sheriff's Office that Kristina's multiple injuries would have been survivable if she had received timely medical attention.

Kristina was found dead on the living room floor of her father's mobile home in Waccasassa, a community located between Trenton aned Newberry, shortly after 6 a.m. Monday, about a half hour after her father called 911 to say the little girl had stopped breathing.

Kristina had been living in the home with her father, Matthew Roland, 23, and his girlfriend, Chelci Folds, for about four months.

Roland was arrested at 4 p.m. Monday and charged with aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter of a child. During his first court appearance on Tuesday morning, bond was set at $750,000. Roland is being held at the Gilchrist County Jail in Trenton.

While being questioned about Kristina's injuries and death, Roland reportedly told deputies that he "got into it" with her on Sunday night and had spanked her. He also told deputies that he had hit her with a belt on Sunday afternoon.

An arrest report filed by the Gilchrist County Sheriff's Office detailed what officials found when they arrived at the home and how Roland and Folds explained the last hours of the child's life.

Folds told investigators that when Roland picked Folds up after getting off work Sunday afternoon, Kristina was in her car seat and “did not look right,” according to the report.

Folds said there was bruising around one of the girl's eyes and she appeared sleepy. She said Kristina did not want supper and was put into bed when the couple returned home.

Folds said that Kristina began to have breathing problems later in the evening and that Roland tried to give the lethargic child — who had previously been diagnosed with asthma — a nebulizer treatment. Then Kristina was put in bed with the couple. Folds told deputies that during the night Kristina apparently soiled the bed and Roland took the girl to her own bed.

Early Monday morning, Roland woke Folds and told her that Kristina was not breathing. Roland and Folds reportedly took the child to the living room, put her down on the floor and Roland tried to give her another nebulizer treatment and CPR before calling 911 at 5:33 a.m.

Among the first to arrive at the home was emergency medical technician James Campbell, who saw what he described to deputies as dark vomit on the child's bed and clothing. He also found dried blood in her mouth and bloody fluid in one ear.

Emergency officials also noted that Kristina had significant bruises on her forehead, left eye and cheek. Her left eye was sunken into her face, a possible indication of broken bones around the eye socket.

Fresh and old bruises were noted on her upper arms, shoulders and thighs, according to emergency officials. Two deep scratches were found on Kristina's back and bloody, circular marks were found on her lower back, officials said.

Dr. Burt examined Kristina at the home before her body was taken to Gainesville for an autopsy. Burt reported that the child's upper lip was torn on the inside of her mouth where it should have attached to her gums. Bruises on Kristina's leg appeared to match the shape and size of an electric hair straightener that was found in the bathroom, Burt said.

Investigators found blood in the bathroom sink, and a patch of hair still attached to a piece of scalp tissue was recovered from the bathtub drain.

A cause of death was not yet available, Sheriff Daniel Slaughter said Tuesday.

Slaughter said Roland had provided officers with “some generic information” about his activities before the child’s death.

Echoing comments from officers Monday, Slaughter said he did not know of any prior incidents in which law enforcement was called to the home for similar allegations or domestic issues.

Officers had not released the crime scene Tuesday, the sheriff said. “It’s a bad deal,” Slaughter said, describing the case. “It gives a whole new meaning to the word domestic violence.”

Roland, a native and lifelong resident of Gilchrist County, has been arrested several times, beginning in 2002 when he was 15 years old.

Although his juvenile arrest record is not public, during the court hearing, officials noted that he had been arrested for forgery and trespassing as a minor.

Roland's adult criminal record began in 2004 and included six arrests by the end of 2008. Charges filed against Roland have included domestic violence, burglaries, batteries, as well as possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia on at least three occasions.

Of the six cases in which Roland was named, adjudication was withheld twice, charges were dropped in three cases and he was found guilty in one case for possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana.

Kristina's mother, Elizabeth Brown, 21, of Orlando, attended Roland's court hearing and afterward told The Sun that she and Kristina both had led troubled lives.

A high school dropout who later earned a GED, Brown said she is the mother of three children by three different men, including an infant whose father is now in state prison. Brown's oldest child, a 6-year-old, is being raised by another relative.

Brown said she and Kristina had been living with Brown’s brother in Kentucky until last year, when her brother decided to return to Florida to live with their mother in Orlando.

According to Brown, she was unemployed and in the midst of a difficult pregnancy at the time, so she sent Kristina to Orlando with her brother some time around November.

Brown said Roland had had no contact with Kristina until his paternity had been established late last year. Then, Brown claimed, Roland went to Orlando and took Kristina from her maternal grandmother. During subsequent court hearings, Roland was given custody of Kristina.

While Roland sat in jail on Tuesday, Brown was awaiting information from the medical examiner's office on when Kristina's body would be released for a funeral. Brown said she plans to have her daughter's funeral in Trenton.

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Fri Oct 30, 2009 2:06 pm

Funeral today for girl, 4, found dead
Kristina Hepp's father is accused of causing the abuse that killed her.

By Karen Voyles
Staff Writer

Published: Friday, May 1, 2009 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, April 30, 2009 at 11:52 p.m.

TRENTON - Preschooler Kristina Hepp will be buried this afternoon while her father sits in a Gilchrist County jail cell accused of inflicting abuse that led to the 4-year-old's death early this week.

Kristina's step-grandparents, with whom she lived for much of her life, said they want today's funeral to focus on the potential that was lost when Kristina died.

"We don't want this ever to happen to another child," said Jamie Gordon, Kristina's step-grandmother.

"That's why we are talking to everyone we can about this situation," said Gordon's husband and Kristina's step-grandfather, Mike Gordon.

Kristina was pronounced dead early Monday morning inside the Waccasassa mobile home where she had lived since February, when a judge awarded temporary custody to her father, Matthew Roland, 23, an unemployed sheet metal worker.

Roland was arrested within hours of Kristina's death and charged with aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter of a child.

While being questioned about Kristina's injuries and death, Roland reportedly told deputies that he had hit her with a belt on Sunday afternoon and that he "got into it" with his daughter on Sunday night and spanked her.

At the time of the court ruling that granted custody of Kristina to Roland, Kristina's mother, Elizabeth Brown, was in the midst of a difficult pregnancy, unemployed, and her life was somewhat unstable, according to the Gordons.

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Fri Oct 30, 2009 2:15 pm

TRENTON, Florida – 911 received a phone call at 5:30 am Monday morning in regards to a young girl not breathing. By time medical personnel arrived at the trailer of Matthew Roland and his girlfriend, Chelci Folds, Matthew’s 4-year-old daughter was already dead. Matthew has now been arrested and facing charges of aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter of a child. The abuse the girl endured are heinous enough, but now it is reporting she would have survived them had she received quicker medical attention.

Matthew Roland
This girl was found with significant injuries that paint a picture of a girl who was getting her ass beat by Matthew on a regular basis. She had fresh and old bruises on her body and her left eye was sunken into her face. Her upper lip was torn on the inside of her mouth where it should have attached to her gums and bruises on Kristina’s leg appeared to match the shape and size of an electric hair straightener that was found in the bathroom along with a patch of hair still attached to a piece of scalp tissue.

But even with all that, she could have lived. Medical Examiner Dr. Martha Burt told investigators that Kristina’s multiple injuries were survivable if she had received timely medical attention. Matthew has only had custody of his daughter for the last 4 months after a paternity test proved he was the father. Kristina’s biological mother, Elizabeth Brown, told reporters she has a troubled life and that Kristina had lived with her and her brother until she sent Kristina to live with her paternal grandmother. After a series of court appearances, Matthew gained custody of Kristina.


http://www.dreamindemon.com/2009/04/29/matthew-roland-murdered-his-daughter-kristina-hepp/

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Fri Oct 30, 2009 2:20 pm

Mother desperate to fly daughter's body back home to Brandenburg
Father faces possible first-degree murder charges, Florida could seek death penalty
by Laura Saylor

May 11, 2009
local woman is enduring the most devastating hardship of her life, and is searching for a way to fly herself and the body of her four-year-old daughter back to Brandenburg.

Elizabeth Brown, 21, and her daughter, Kristina Hepp, moved from Florida to Brandenburg in early 2008. Hepp attended Brandenburg Primary School until February 2009 when she was relocated back to Trenton, Fla., and was eventually put in temporary custody of her father, 23-year-old Matthew Roland.

In an effort to regain custody of her daughter, Brown traveled to Trenton, Fla., more than three weeks ago to prepare for the custody trial. That trial never came to pass, however, as Hepp was found dead inside her father's mobile home on the morning of April 27.

Officials from the Gilchrist County Sheriff's Department in Florida said the girl's body endured severe beatings and there was evidence inside the home that led investigators to believe violent acts had occurred.


Brandenburg resident Elizabeth Brown places a pacifier on her four-year-old daughter’s casket during a funeral service held in Trenton, Fla., on May 1. Kristina Hepp was found dead from severe beatings inside her father’s Florida home on April 27.
Roland was charged with aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter, though reports from The Gainesville Sun indicate charges may increase to first-degree murder and the state could seek the death penalty.

A closed casket funeral for Hepp was held last Friday in Florida, though Brown is desperate to bring her daughter back home to Brandenburg.

Brown just gave birth before traveling to Florida, and is the new mother of a five-week-old infant.

Brown's close friend, Jennifer Wheeler, of Brandenburg, traveled to Florida to be with her friend during this affliction, though both women are now stranded with no money to return home — with Kristina's body — to Meade County.

"We've been living out of a hotel room for weeks now ... Elizabeth's been living here for almost a month," Wheeler said. "She just wants to get home. She just wants to bring her daughter home."

Hager Funeral Home in Brandenburg has offered to hold a funeral for Hepp at a very nominal cost, and Wheeler said Weldon Christian Church, also in Brandenburg, has offered its services as well for interment.

Additionally, a fund has been opened by Carla Burns, Wheeler's mother, to accept contributions to help fly Brown, Wheeler, and Hepp's body back to Brandenburg.

Donations to the Kristina Hepp Memorial Fund may be made through Hager Funeral Home by mail at 633 Bland Street, Brandenburg, KY, 40108.

"She's going to be buried in her favorite pink princess dress," Wheeler said. "Elizabeth has just been mourning. She just sits here and keeps petting the dress. She just wants to put her daughter to rest. She just wants to be able to find peace somehow."

http://www.thenewsstandard.com/Articles-c-2009-05-11-79666.112114_Mother_desperate_to_fly_daughters_body_back_home_to_Brandenburg.html

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Mon Nov 30, 2009 11:48 am

:rip:

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:47 pm

:candle:

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PostSubject: Re: Kristina Hepp (4) R.I.P.   Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:59 am

:rip:

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