Nicholas Ecker Shawnee Kansas father burns down house with baby inside, killing him. Dad was embroiled in a domestic assault case with baby boy’s mother.
A suburban Kansas man has been accused of intentionally setting his family home on fire and killing his infant son who was inside the structure when it was set ablaze early Sunday morning.
Nicholas Adam Ecker, 28, of Shawnee, Prairie Village, following his arrest was on Monday booked with one count of first degree murder and aggravated arson with risk of bodily harm for allegedly starting the fire that took the baby’s life Fox4 reported.
The charges against the father follow a long history of run ins with the law, including the father allegedly violating a protective order against the victim’s mother. He faces separate charges of felony stalking, aggravated domestic assault, and illegal possession of a firearm.
Johnson County District Court records show 15 cases against Ecker over the years, including various juvenile offenses, domestic violence matters, and current cases. Records show that some of the juvenile cases, like misdemeanor possession or paraphernalia charges, were dropped by the prosecution. Other juvenile cases, such as misdemeanor battery and false reporting of a crime, ended with Ecker under the supervision of the state.
Records also showed a 2010 guilty plea to misdemeanor disorderly conduct; a 2010 guilty plea for felony defacing ID marks of a firearm; a 2011 conviction for felony theft; a 2020 guilty plea to firearm possession by a felon.
Ran towards front door as home was ablaze before being stopped
According to the Shawnee Police Department, officers and firefighters at approximately 1 a.m. on Sunday responded to a 911 calls about a house fire at a residence located in the 10000 block of West 69th Terrace. Upon arriving at the scene, first responders reportedly found the home was already engulfed in flames, KMBC-TV reported. Firefighters battling the blaze entered the home and reportedly found the infant inside. The victim was pronounced dead on the scene.
Ecker at some point, while the fire was raging had at some point attempted to run towards the home’s front door only to be stopped by by police and firefighters the Shawnee Mission Post reported.
Ecker was eventually detained and charged with setting the fire.
A judge ordered Ecker to remain detained at the Johnson County Jail on a bond of $1 million for the murder and arson charges, as well as an additional $58,500 for the stalking, battery, and firearm charges, online records show.
‘Our hearts go out to the family,’ Shawnee Fire Department Deputy Chief Corey Sands said after the blaze was under control, according to Newsweek. ‘Shawnee is a tight-knit community. Our hearts go out to everyone.’
Cory Holmes, a friend of the family, reportedly told KMBC that the entire ordeal was ‘hard to process.’
‘Just shock and awe, I’d never see anything like this happen to this family,’ Holmes reportedly said. ‘They’re a great family so they need all the support they can get.’
A GoFundMe was set up for the family by Jackie Phelps, who identified herself on the page as the sister of the victim’s mother. Phelps also referred to the infant victim as ‘Junior.’
No immediate motive for the blaze was given.