Lindsey Thomasson is behind bars after police say the woman abused and killed Presley Kay Porting, her boyfriend’s 2-year-old daughter.
The Gardner, Kansas, woman was arrested and charged with first-degree murder this week for the girl’s death back in early February. Police were initially called to a home for a report that the toddler had stopped breathing. Porting was taken to a hospital, but she was pronounced dead shortly afterward, Fox 4 Kansas City reported.
Lindsey Thomasson was engaged to the girl’s father at the time, although the two have since broken up, the report noted.
The exact circumstances of the girl’s death are not yet public. Police have still not released a cause of death for Presley Kay Porting, but they did note that Thomasson was charged with killing the girl “while committing or attempting to commit child abuse,” the Kansas City Star reported.
It was also unclear exactly when Presley may have died. The charge noted that the abuse took place sometime between February 5 and February 7, the day that police were called to the house for reports that the girl was unresponsive.
At the time of the toddler’s death, her mother, Stephanie Porting, was at an in-patient rehabilitation facility. The toddler’s maternal grandfather, Martin Porting, said at the time that he felt responsible for allowing the toddler to live in what turned out to be an unsafe home.
“I let them down,” he told KCTV News 5. “As a father, you want to protect your children. I would do anything, I would lay my life down for that little baby. Maybe I should have been more informed or involved.”
Martin Porting added that he thought at the time that Presley would be safe living with her father.
“I don’t know how my little granddaughter is dead when she was in a house with people who were supposed to caring for her and protecting her,” he said.
The toddler’s death was devastating to her father, Nick Russom. The grieving father posted a GoFundMe page, where he noted that his life had unraveled after Presley’s death.
“There are no words to explain the heart ache of losing my sweet, perfect, innocent daughter,” he wrote. “The nights are the hardest. When I close my eyes the sadness becomes almost unbearable.”
Russom added that he lost his job and car after the toddler’s death, and his two other children were taken into state custody while the investigation was ongoing.
“Since the investigation began I have lost my house, car and all of my belongings inside my house without my knowledge. The State has taken custody of my other two daughters, 2 year old Lilly and 1 year old Layla, while the investigation is ongoing. I cannot return to my union job until the investigation is completed and I have transportation. A family friend has been kind enough to let me stay on his couch. I am taking on small side jobs when I can, but they are few and far between. Giving up is not an option. I have two confused and sad little girls wondering where their parents and sister are.”
After news of the arrest was released on Tuesday, pictures of Lindsey Thomasson, including the woman’s mugshot, went viral online. Other pictures showed the 24-year-old Thomasson smiling with Presley Ray Porting and two other young girls.
Lindsey Thomasson is being held on $2 million bond for the alleged murder of Presley Kay Porting.
[Featured Image by Johnson County Jail]