Dodge County District Attorney Kurt Klomberg said his decision to enter into a plea agreement stemmed from his desire to spare the child the trauma of reliving the events while testifying during a jury trial.
Instead, Kenneth and Kathryn Kreier pleaded no contest to charges related to the abuse of the child that took place in their town of Clyman home between September 2007 and December 2008. Kenneth Kreier, 46, was found guilty for failure to protect a child from harm, child neglect and disorderly conduct, while his wife, Kathryn Kreier, 46, was found guilty on two counts of child neglect. Each will serve one year of probation. In addition Kathryn Kreier will serve 60 days in jail while Kenneth Kreier was ordered to serve 30 days in jail.“This was a very difficult, heart-wrenching situation. My ultimate goal was to protect the victim, both from future suffering and re-victimizing her by making her relive her trauma during a trial,” said Klomberg.
Klomberg told the media that the Kreiers’ parental rights had been permanently terminated and the child had been adopted into a “loving home where she is safe and thriving.”Prior to the plea hearing, the Kreiers’ attorneys had convinced the court to grant them access to several years of confidential psychological treatment history of the child.
“This meant that not only would a trial require the child to relive and recount the abuse she experienced, but the child’s cross-examination by the defense would include the private and intimate thoughts, diagnosis and experiences of her psychological treatment history,” Klomberg said.During the 13-month period the girl, now age 15, was in the care of the Kreiers, she lost nearly 25 percent of her body mass, going from 91 to 70 pounds. Child welfare investigators were tipped off about the girl’s condition by school officials
The woman went as far as prohibiting school officials from giving hot lunch to the girl, according to the complaint.The girl told police that she was often locked outside and forced to sleep outside naked. The Kreiers adopted the girl in 2008, according to the complaint.
“Since the child is now safe, the only purpose a trial would serve would be to seek more punishment for the defendants,” Klomberg said. “I will not subject this child to additional trauma simply to see the defendants spend a few more months in jail,” Klomberg said