Thursday, November 29, 2007

"Baby Grace"

This is a bit of a departure this week, but I simply cannot get my mind off of this tragic murder of a little girl in Texas. The body of two-year-old “Baby Grace” was found in a plastic container in Galveston Bay and was recently identified as Riley Trenor.

The mother, Kimberly Dawn Trenor has been arrested, along with her husband, Royce Clyde Zeigler II, and is in Galveston County's jail, charged with injury to a child and tampering with evidence. According to court documents, Trenor told police she and her husband killed the girl in July and hid her body in a shed before dumping the body in Galveston Bay.

What sickens me most about this story is not that it is merely another innocent child who suffered at the hands of adults, but the fact that she suffered horribly over a period of at least six hours. According to a statement by the mother, her husband beat Riley repeatedly with a belt because the girl failed to say “please” or use other forms of what he considered good manners.

According to the statement, this abuse continued each time the girl failed to respond appropriately and escalated into throwing her across the room and holding her head under water. When the stepfather became more enraged, he threw her so hard that she hit her head on a tile floor, sustaining severe head trauma. Allegedly, that is when the couple gave her some pain medication and she died.

Any parent can understand that flare of anger when a child misbehaves and you have the urge to slap him or her, but most parents, thankfully, take a deep breath and calm themselves before taking action. Sometimes they don’t stop in time, but certainly after that first slap, they stop and say, “What on earth am I doing?”

That these people could not do that, baffles me. There is simply no way that I can understand what drives people to abuse and murder children. It's got to be more than just anger. Anger flares and then dies down. It doesn't stay at a fever pitch for six hours.

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