Crime & Courts

Preliminary hearing in North Newton child abuse case rescheduled

Jim Nachtigal enters Harvey County District Court for a hearing Friday afternoon. Nachtigal and his wife, Paige, are facing 12 felony charges related to child abuse.
Jim Nachtigal enters Harvey County District Court for a hearing Friday afternoon. Nachtigal and his wife, Paige, are facing 12 felony charges related to child abuse.

A preliminary hearing for the North Newton couple charged with multiple counts of child abuse and aggravated battery that was scheduled for Friday was continued to March 16.

Jim and Paige Nachtigal face 12 felony charges each: three counts of child abuse alleging cruel and inhuman corporal punishment, seven counts of aggravated battery and two counts of child abuse alleging child torture.

The couple are accused of systemic abuse of their three adopted Peruvian children at their North Newton home. Doctors have diagnosed the children as victims of child torture.

The aggravated battery charges and the charges of child abuse alleging child torture were filed Thursday.

Defense attorneys for the Nachtigals said in court Friday that they had not yet received information from the prosecution on the new charges.

A Harvey County judge also reduced bond amounts for Jim and Paige Nachtigal to $100,000 each, down from the original $300,000.

Harvey County Attorney David Yoder argued that the bond amount should be increased to $500,000.

“I believe the $300,000 may have been inappropriate on three charges, but they have 12 counts,” Yoder said in court. “$300,000 is woefully low on a 12-count complaint.”

The judge decided to lower the bond because of the Nachtigals’ lack of prior criminal history, and on the condition that they be under supervision.

The Harvey County courtroom was standing room only Friday afternoon. The hearing was rescheduled for 10 a.m. March 16.

Matt Riedl: 316-268-6660, @RiedlMatt

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