Justice will be served for Crystal Williams, stepmom of a 5-year-old boy who was starved and beaten to death. The stepmom will serve a 99-year sentence for the horrific child abuse that led to Josiah Williams’ death just two days after Christmas in 2012.
As testified by the Bexar County Medical Examiner, Josiah’s cause of death is listed as “dehydration in a battered, underweight child.”
Crystal Williams told the jury that Josiah was a very picky eater, trying to account for him being so underweight.
“I even tried compromising with him, giving snacks or donuts, just so he would eat something.”
Last week, Williams pleaded guilty to a first-degree felony charge, injury to a child. The autopsy revealed that 5-year-old Josiah was only 38-pounds, and he had multiple bruises and abrasions throughout his body.
Investigators found a hole in Josiah’s closet that matched the size of the little boy’s head, as well as traces of blood near the hole.
Although Crystal Williams received punishment for the crimes she committed and the innocent life she took from this world, there are many deceased children that have not received justice, including 16-month-old Alissa Guernsey.
Alissa Guernsey was just 16 months old when her life was taken from her after being brutally beaten and tortured for months by Christy Shaffer, the cousin of Alissa’s mother. After Alissa’s father died in a tragic car accident, her mother began neglecting Alissa. Christy and Matt Shaffer opened their door to Alissa. Who would have known such a loving act of kindness could lead to such a tragic ending?
Just a few months after Alissa moved in with Christy Shaffer, Alissa was unresponsive and was rushed to the hospital in LaGrange. Christy claims that she was running errands with the kids, including Alissa, and when she arrived at home, she noticed Alissa was “not breathing and unresponsive.” Unfortunately for Alissa, it was too late and she was unable to be saved.
Medical experts and investigators described Alissa’s bruised and battered body as “obvious signs of abuse.” The toddler had bruising on her head, legs, and face. She had lacerations in her mouth, some that looked fresh and others that were old and healed over. Further, Alissa had hemorrhaging around her brain.
The coroner ruled Alissa’s death as homicide caused by a blunt force injury of the head. Instead of the LaGrange County prosecutor filing child manslaughter and murder charges against Christy Shaffer, he declared a grand jury decide her fate. Christy served only 77 days in prison for charges of neglect of a dependent.
Tyler Sprunger was appalled with the outcome of Christy Shaffer’s case.
“The autopsy specifically says homicide due to blunt force trauma of the head. The little girl was covered in bruises. Her hair, it was ripped out of her head. That comes from killing a child. I love Christy, but what she did was wrong.”
When we see cases such as that of Alissa Guernsey’s killer, it doesn’t give much hope to all of the other children’s families who suffered similar fate. Fortunately for Josiah, his murderer will serve many years, hopefully the remainder of her life, in prison for the hurt and pain she caused young Josiah.
When Crystal was taken away in handcuffs after the police found Josiah dead, she made a comment while being escorted to the police car.
“I don’t know what happened. I love my kids. We just didn’t think it was that bad. To all my family, I’m so sorry and I love y’all.”
Josiah lived a short life, and surely not under good circumstances. Many people cared for Josiah, yet the few people who Josiah relied on for love, support, and care completely failed him. Josiah’s father hadn’t seen him for over two years, yet the young boy was forced to stay with him and his stepmom with no questions asked. Josiah’s grandmother, who had been caring for Josiah, received a letter from Charleston’s lawyer stating that he is entitled to a month-long visitation. Of course, Patty Ojeda-Quintero didn’t know that she would never see her grandson again.
“I remember he was talking real quiet, like he was being shy. I asked if he knew he wouldn’t be coming home for a while and he said he knew. I said I love you and he told me I love you too Grandma, and that was it. And that was it.”
Charleston Williams, Josiah’s father, is still awaiting trial. Crystal will have a chance for parole after she serves 30 years, and she must also pay a $10,000 fine.
[Photo via Shutterstock]