Amy Parmer told police after 17-month-old Kamryn Schlitter was taken to the hospital in 2010 that Kamryn was “very behind” for her age level and the some of the toddler’s bruises, attributed to child abuse, occurred while she was at daycare.
Parmer, 29, of Hiawatha, in video police interview said Kamryn was a little slow and she was probably at the level of a 14- or 15-month-old. She also said Kamryn didn’t talk much.
Parmer also in the interview said the bruises on Kamryn’s cheeks were not visible to her or Kamryn’s father Zyriah Schlitter before she went to daycare March 8, 2010. She said Kamryn had been given time outs at daycare for climbing on bookshelves.
Parmer added that the DHS investigation started because of those bruises would be unfounded.
Some of Parmer’s statement conflict with testimony during the trial from Kamryn’s mother and her grandparents who said Kamryn was bright, active, playful and talked all the time.
Daycare teachers also testified that Kamryn had the cheek bruises and a forehead bruise before she arrived March 8 and March 15, and that Kamryn never had any time outs that they could remember.
The video was played Friday during the trial of Parmer, who is charged with first-degree murder and child endangerment resulting in death. She is accused of inflicting the physical abuse of Kamryn, along with Kamryn’s father and her ex-boyfriend Schlitter. Kamryn died from blunt force head injuries March 28, 2010.
Schlitter, 25, of Cedar Rapids, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment resulting in death last December and is serving 50 years in prison.
The prosecution wrapped up this week’s testimony with video and audio taped police interviews of Parmer and Schlitter. First Assistant Linn County Attorney Nick Maybanks will continue his case 9 a.m. Tuesday. Follow Gazette Reporter Trish Mehaffey’s live coverage from the courtroom.
Parmer in the interview told police she babysat Kamryn every Sunday night when Schlitter went to a financial class. She had been dating him for about three months. Schlitter stayed with her every night and they were planning on living together in the future, she said.
Parmer said leading up March 21, 2010, during the month Kamryn lived with Schlitter, Kamryn had been sick, running a fever and would wake up three to four times a night. She had been sick from pink eye and an ear infection for a few weeks.
Parmer said Kamryn was taking an antibiotic for the infection but she stressed she never gave the toddler any medicine and “we” didn’t give Kamryn medication that day.
Kamryn got sleepy that night about 7 p.m., March 21, 2010, and Parmer gave her a bath and then put her to bed, she said starting to cry. Kamryn then started having a seizure or tensing up and then her eyes rolled back in her head and she called 911.
According to testimony, the 911 call wasn’t made until 7:45 p.m.
Tyler Johnston, Parmer’s attorney, on cross asked Hiawatha Police Sgt. Rod Fiser, who interviewed Parmer, if it was possible Parmer wasn’t timing what happened that night and it could have been a different time when Kamryn became sleepy.
Fiser said he didn’t know.
Maybanks asked Fiser how many times Parmer said “we” and “us” when referring to Kamryn’s care and Fiser said 28 times.
The defense in its opening statement claimed Schlitter is the one who inflicted Kamryn’s injuries and emphasized the fact that Parmer was just the babysitter, not a parent figure, and wasn’t responsible for Kamryn’s care or health.
In earlier testimony, Dr. Patricia Kirby, a surgical and neuropathologist with UI Hospitals and Clinics, who specializes in pediatric brains, testified about the autopsy on Kamryn’s brain.
Kirby said Kamryn sufferered a rotational head injury. A rotational head injury can occur without an impact. It could occur by someone picking up a child and moving them “vigorously” and then suddenly stopping. It can also occur from an impact with something but it could be a hard or soft surface like a bed.
She said there was evidence of recent sub dural hemorrhages and an older bleed. The recent hemorrhages could have occur five to seven days from when Kamryn died March 28, 2010 and the older hemorrhaging was weeks to months old.
The timing of the injury is important to the state because it claims Parmer could have inflicted the fatal injuries. Most of the doctors who have testified have said the fatal head injury occurred within hours to days of when Kamryn was seen at the hospital.
Only a small portion of Schlitter’s first police interview was played Friday. The rest of the audio interview will be played Tuesday.