Couple jailed in child abuse case held on suspicion of first-degree felony murder

06/04/2014 12:15 PM

08/06/2014 12:18 PM

A Wichita mother and her boyfriend jailed on suspicion of abusing a 3-year-old girl are now being held on suspicion of first-degree felony murder, according to online roster of Sedgwick County Jail inmates.

Monica Krueger, 24, and Krueger’s boyfriend, 23-year-old Evan Schuessler were arrested Tuesday on suspicion of child abuse and aggravated child endangerment after the toddler was taken to a local hospital with numerous, life-threatening injuries.

Wednesday evening the first-degree felony murder count was added to the booking charges for both, jail records show. Krueger late Wednesday was being housed in the jail’s clinic; earlier she had been housed in one of the jail’s pods. Her bond was listed at $100,000.

Schuessler was being held without bond late Wednesday, according to the online jail records. Previously, he was being held on $100,000 bond. The records indicated the two charges Schuessler had originally been booked into jail on – abuse of a child and aggravated endangering a a child – had been amended to first-degree murder “in commission of a felony” and child abuse.

As of Wednesday, neither had been formally charged in the case.

Wesley Medical Center spokeswoman Susan Burchill said late Wednesday that she was unable to provide a condition update on the girl based on the information that The Eagle provided. Wichita police said earlier in the day that the girl was in critical condition.

Wichita police spokesman Lt. Dan East also said late Wednesday that he did not know the condition of the child. More details were expected to be released by police Thursday during the media’s daily briefing with the agency, held weekdays at 10 a.m. at City Hall.

The child was brought to Wesley by ambulance early Monday evening from Falcon Pointe Apartments in the 4000 block of South Hydraulic. Hospital staff notified police of her arrival at about 7:30 p.m. after doctors assessed her injuries.

A police document reported the toddler suffered bruises all over her body as well as swelling in her brain. She was being treated in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Wesley Medical Center. Her name has not been released by authorities.

A jail booking report listed “inhuman corporal punishment of a child under 18” as offenses for both Krueger and Schuessler.

Support for the child has blossomed on social media sites. Twitter users were asking people to pray for her and a Facebook page was created to publicize a candlelight vigil outside Wesley on Wednesday evening.

Related links: Police: Girl, 3, had been beaten for a month before she died (June 5, 2014)

Child, 3, in critical condition; mother, boyfriend arrested (June 3, 2014)

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