A Kansas father and his girlfriend are facing felony murder charges in the death of his 3-year-old daughter — amid allegations that she was “tortured,” according to reports.
Investigators believe the girl, Olivia Ann Jansen, was killed sometime Thursday, the day before she was reported missing by her father, Howard Jansen III, from her Kansas City home, the Kansas City Star reported.
Just hours later, at about 5:30 p.m. Friday, investigators found a child’s body believed to be Olivia’s in a wooded area roughly nine blocks from her home.
“This is a loss for our community,” Wyandotte County District Attorney Mark Dupree told reporters Sunday. “I implore everyone in this community to stand with this family as they go through one the most tumultuous times, a moment that nobody in life should ever have to go through.”
Jansen, 29, reported his daughter missing early Friday, telling police he last saw the girl at about 11 p.m. Thursday. Jansen told investigators he realized she was gone at 6:30 a.m. Friday, claiming he found his back door open, police said.
Charging documents indicate Olivia was killed sometime Thursday, but authorities have not released details on how she died.
In addition to murder, Jansen and his girlfriend, Jacqulyn Amanda Kirkpatrick, 33, are charged with aggravated endangerment of a child and criminal desecration.
Dozens of people, including the girl’s grandparents, gathered outside the Wyandotte County courthouse on Sunday to demand that Jansen and Kirkpatrick be held accountable in the girl’s death.
“I’m glad it’s first-degree murder, wish it was capital murder, but I wish it could be more,” her grandmother, Elisabeth Jansen, told KMBC. “I want them to pay for what they did to her. This has been going on for months and it didn’t have to.”
Olivia’s grandfather, Howard Jansen II, said relatives tried to “seek help” for the girl and contacted child welfare workers about the alleged “torture” she was enduring, KMBC reported.
Jansen and Kirkpatrick remained in custody Monday at the Wyandotte County Detention Center on $500,000 bond, online records show.
With Post wires
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