Toddler was beaten and starved to death
Both the prosecutor and the judge describe the case as “horrific” in the death of a 3-year-old girl.
Jaymie Rundle of Holmen, Wis., pleaded no contest Thursday to neglect of her boyfriend Dylan Bartsh’s abused daughter, Audryna Bartsh.
The three-year-old girl was apparently battered by the 32-year-old Winona man. Audryna had also been starved.
Rundle was given an eight-month sentence of electronic monitoring to be served at home. The verdict came nearly three years after Audryna died from repeated physical abuse and being underfed.
The autopsy had discovered over 25 bruises and 20 scrapes on the toddler’s head. Audryna was bleeding from the brain, had a black eye, torn lip and 70 scars on her neck from, likely, adult fingernails. She also had over 15 marks on her body that resembled being hit with a wire hanger.
“This is the saddest case I’ve had involving child abuse,” La Crosse district attorney Tim Gruenke said, adding Rundle had a responsibility to tell Audryna’s mother or other family members what was happening to the girl.
“This was torture,” Gruenke continued. “It wasn’t just one event. It went on for at least a couple of months because (Audryna) was incredibly malnourished, bruises covered all through her entire body.”
Judge Elliot Levine said it appeared Rundle was abused, herself, by Dylan Bartsh.
“At some point we have to suffer the consequences to save another, and you didn’t do that,” Levine said, noting that Rundle apparently was under pressure by Bartsh not to call for help for the child.
Dylan Bartsh goes on trial in January for child abuse and neglect leading to death.
The child’s biological mother was not a part of the household.