Ethan Hauschultz death: Tina McKeever-Hauschultz Wisconsin woman sentenced to five years prison for the death of 7 yr old boy beaten after forgetting bible verses and then buried alive.
A Manitowoc County, Wisconsin woman has been sentenced to jail time for her role in the preventable death of a seven year old boy in her guardian-ship.
Tina McKeever-Hauschultz was sentenced Friday to 5 years in prison for her role in the events leading up to and failing to prevent the death of Ethan Hauschultz, 7.
On the day of the boy’s death, Ethan was beaten, forced to carry a 44-pound log for up to two hours, before being buried in the snow, April 2018, prosecutors say. The boy’s punishment purportedly came as a result of forgetting some bible line verses.
Ethan died of hypothermia, while also exhibiting extensive other injuries, including blunt force injuries to his head, chest and abdomen, and a rib fracture, the medical examiner determined, the complaint states.
Foster mother deemed complicit for failing to act and stop ongoing abuse
Damian Hauschultz, now 17, and Tina’s son is charged with reckless homicide and other counts. He allegedly supervised Ethan’s punishment that day. A scheduling conference will be held April 5. No trial date has been set.
Timothy Hauschultz, 50, Damian’s father, Tina’s husband and the great-uncle of Ethan, faces eight charges, including felony murder, for allegedly ordering the punishment. No trial date has been set. He returns to court April 19.
McKeever-Hauschultz was emotional as she apologized to the court, asking for forgiveness, saying she was abused as a child. The previously court appointed guardian along with her husband, although not directly attributable to the boy’s death, was charged after it was deemed she was complicit in the boy’s death.
‘I wish you could truly know how sorry I truly am because my heart hurts every day knowing such a tragedy occurred and I cannot undo it, no matter how hard I want it not to be. Because of my actions, another has suffered. I am truly sorry from the bottom of my heart. Please forgive me, if even humanly possible. If given another chance at life, I will get extensive counseling for both me and my family. I know changes need to made and I will be the first one to admit and actively work to change for the good. I was a follower in the past, and now I am to be a leader,’ McKeever-Hauschultz said. ‘I wish I could bring Ethan back. My actions, my lack of actions, have left many traumatized. I’m sorry for not being a good person when I feel like I could have. I wish that never existed, and Ethan would be alive and well.’
‘These children needed you, and you failed them.’
The prosecution and defense attorney made a joint recommendation for two years in prison, which Judge Jerilyn Dietz said was not sufficient. Instead the judge said a longer sentence was needed to send a message that McKeever-Hauschultz could have done more to prevent harm to Ethan.
Prosecutors had argued McKeever-Hauschultz knew abuse was going on in her household and had done nothing to stop it. Judge Dietz told her that she could have made one call to stop the abuse.
The judge noted the charges were reduced from intentionally contributing to delinquency causing death to McKeever-Hauschultz’s failure to act.
Dietz ultimately found McKeever-Hauschultz guilty of child abuse-failure to prevent great bodily harm, and failing to prevent mental harm to a child, and sentenced her to five years in prison and five years probation. Dietz acknowledged McKeever-Hauschultz having struggled with a traumatic brain injury suffered several years ago, while saying she didn’t believe McKeever-Hauschultz is ‘free of culpability.’
‘You were responsible for the care of these children,’ Dietz declared according to the Green Bay Press Gazette. ‘These children needed you, and you failed them.’
McKeever-Hauschultz and Timothy Hauschultz, were the court-appointed guardians for Ethan and his siblings. Ethan was Timothy’s grand-nephew. They were not home at the time of the incident.