Thursday, July 8, 2010

Custodial dad of girl found dead in basement crawl space arrested (Monument, Colorado)

Custodial dad HANIF SIMS has been arrested in Nevada after a 2-month search. He is currently "suspected" of felony 2nd-degree assault in the death of his 9-year-old daughter, whose remains were found in the basement of a crawl space that Dad formerly rented in Colorado. Once again, please note that Daddy got legal custody in New Jersey DESPITE an ongoing child abuse investigation and a warrant for a weapons violation. And now this poor girl's mother waits for the body to be sent back home so they can have a memorial service. Horrible. Not seeing any evidence that daddies are discriminated against, folks.

Father of girl found dead in Monument home is arrested
July 07, 2010 8:12 AM

The father of a young girl whose body was found in the family’s former home in Monument has been arrested in Nevada after nearly a two-month search.

El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said Wednesday night that Hanif Sims, the father of 9-year-old Genesis Sims, and his wife or girlfriend, Monique Lynch, are in custody in Henderson, Nev. Sheriff’s investigators sent Henderson police to an area motel, where the pair were arrested without incident.

Hanif Sims is suspected of felony second-degree assault and misdemeanor child abuse in El Paso County, Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Lt. Lari Sevene said. Arrest warrants were issued June 4. Lynch is wanted in New Jersey for a drug-related probation violation; Sims also has a New Jersey warrant for a weapons violation.

Sheriff’s Office detectives flew to Nevada Wednesday night to interview Sims and Lynch on Genesis’ death.

On May 14, construction workers renovating the basement of a townhome in the 700 block of Century Place in Monument found the decomposed body of a small girl. DNA test results released Tuesday identified the body as that of Genesis.

“(The investigation) kicks into high gear now. The next key piece is what the coroner rules,” Maketa said. “The value in making contact is to be able to hear their side of the story and find out why they didn’t contact us in the first place.”

The cause and manner of the girl’s death hasn’t been determined, however, pending further test results, Sevene said.

Sims and Lynch have been together for about three years and moved to Monument in 2008, according to Lynch’s sister, Cassandra Lynch.

Genesis attended second grade at Palmer Lake Elementary School, according to a release by Lewis-Palmer District 38. She was enrolled for six weeks but spent “much less time than that” attending class, and she was taken out of school in October 2008 after her parents said they wanted to start home-schooling.

“Our schools and staff have provided information to law enforcement authorities and are fully committed to anything we can do to help in this investigation,” the district’s release stated.

The couple moved out of the townhome in early 2009, and it is believed they lived at Union Rescue Mission homeless shelter in Los Angeles from March until December

News Channel 13 reported that the couple called the station and denied killing Genesis, claiming they found her lying lifeless in a bathtub and then buried her in the basement.

Wednesday, the Sheriff’s Office accused News Channel 13 of jeopardizing the investigation through its coverage of the case.

“KRDO has not necessarily been very direct in dealing with us. It has become clear from witness statements that early on in the investigation (KRDO) may have created a situation where we could not locate (Sims and Lynch),” Sevene said. “To put information out there and to say that this is someone’s side of the story is not necessarily in the best interest of the case in its entirety.”

In a written statement, news director Michael Sipes said News Channel 13’s reporters immediately contacted the Sheriff’s Office when contacted by Lynch and Sims, and gave investigators a cell phone number and the place the couple said they were staying. They also held off airing the conversation for a day at investigators’ request.

“We stand by our stories and investigation and have not been contacted once by El Paso County Sheriff, Terry Maketa. We welcome the opportunity to sit down and talk with him about any concerns he has over our handling of this story but we stand by all of our reporting on this matter,” the statement said.

Genesis’ mother, Jopetia Garretson, said she is awaiting the return of her daughter’s body to New Jersey so she and other relatives including Hanif Sims’ father, who helped care for Genesis, can hold a memorial service. She recalled that her daughter was always smiling and loved Dora the Explorer.

“I’m not happy that she’s gone, but I’m happy that she’s away from them,” Garretson said. “She’s in a better place. I’ll just be glad when I get her back here.”

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