Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Custodial dad, girlfriend bound over for trial in torture-murder of 3-year-old daughter (Holmen, Wisconsin)

We've reported on this case before, but this is the first time I have seen it confirmed that dad DYLAN BARTSH was CUSTODIAL.

This is what happens when we strip out social services. Moms with serious illnesses or disabilities are forced to farm out their kids, just like we were still living in the 19th century. This child would never have been in the home of these psychos if the mother had had adequate support.

Father, girlfriend bound over for trial in toddler’s death

Holmen father, girlfriend charged in toddler’s death
A Holmen father and his girlfriend beat a malnourished 3-year-old girl, subjected her to 10-hour timeouts and may have forced her to eat salt

LA CROSSE, Wis. — A phone call from a nurse ripped Sheena Poldoski from her sleep early Oct. 29.

“I remember her words vividly,” Poldoski said during an interview last month. “She said, ‘You need to get ready. You need to come say goodbye to your daughter.’”

Poldoski drove from Hutchinson, Minn., to a La Crosse emergency room, where her 3-year-old daughter clung to life. She grabbed Audryna Bartsh’s tiny body, apologized through sobs and held her daughter until she died on Oct. 31.

The toddler’s father, Dylan Bartsh, 30, and his girlfriend, Jaymie Rundle, 24, subjected the malnourished and dehydrated child to extensive abuse while raising her in their Holmen home until she suffered a seizure early Oct. 28, according to testimony in La Crosse County Circuit Court.

A judge Wednesday bound the couple over for trial on charges of child neglect resulting in death and physical abuse of a child, both as party to the crime. They return to court Tuesday for arraignments.

“I hate them. They’re monsters,” Poldoski said. “I want them to suffer the way my daughter did. I would love an eye for an eye, but that’s not the way it is. I want them in prison for the rest of their lives. I want them to suffer for the rest of their lives.”

Dane County Medical Examiner Vincent Tranchida testified Wednesday that he discovered 22 scrapes and 28 bruises on the toddler’s head, including a black eye, as well as a torn lip and bleeding in her brain.

Audryna had 70 scars on her neck consistent with an adult fingernail. Abrasions, bite marks and 17 injuries consistent with being struck with a wire hanger covered her body.

The child also was dehydrated and emaciated, with cracked lips, sunken ribs and protruding hip bones.

“We’re talking about quite a few days of not being fed enough,” Tranchida said.

The toddler’s sodium level reached 206 — the normal range is 136 to 146 — and the medical examiner could not rule out she was forced to ingest table salt.

Tranchida ruled Audryna’s death a homicide, the result of child abuse.

Bartsh told police he had “checked out” of caring for Audryna and considered her Rundle’s responsibility, Holmen police investigator Crystal Sedevie testified. He said he spanked the toddler after he noticed she was thin but did not seek medical care because he was frightened police would investigate her physical injuries.

Bartsh also said Rundle denied harming the girl when he confronted her, Sedevie testified.

Two other children who lived in the house said the couple spanked Audryna and that Rundle slapped and hit her with a flyswatter, Sedevie said. Police did not see signs of abuse to four other children living in the house.

Bartsh and Rundle took custody of Audryna in May 2013 from Poldoski, her biological mother, although she said she did not forfeit her rights to her child.

Poldoski said a medical condition that required surgeries left her unable to care for Audryna and her son.

“I knew I was having a hard time taking care of my kids. I wanted what was best for them,” she said. “It was the most difficult thing I ever had to do. Clearly, I wish I had never made that decision.

“Do not make me regret this,” Poldoski said she told Bartsh. #She next saw her daughter Oct. 29 in a hospital bed, hooked to ventilators.

“I couldn’t believe they would do that to her,” she said. “I knew they were going to go away for this.”

Poldoski remembers praying for a daughter when she learned she was pregnant in 2010. Audryna was born Aug. 12, 2011, at a healthy 7 pounds, her mother said. She grew into a child drawn to shoes and leopard print.

“She was a little bit of a drama queen,” Poldoski said.

Audryna’s ashes are in a white box on her mother’s dresser. One day, when there’s justice in her daughter’s case, Poldoski plans to hold a celebration of life.

“People say, ‘Be strong,’ but I don’t feel strong. The only thing that keeps me going is my son and knowing one day I’ll see Audryna again,” she said. “I’m so sad. It’s a living nightmare.”