Man pleads not guilty in murder, rape of 1-year-old

Kyle Parker (Photo Provided/Owen County Jail)

OWEN COUNTY, Ind. (WISH) — The man being held in connection to an Owen County toddler’s death has pleaded not guilty after being charged with her rape and murder.

Kyle Parker has been charged with murder, kidnapping, rape, child molesting, aggravated battery, strangulation, obstruction of justice and failure to report a dead body in Owen County.

“This is the first time in my tenure that I’ve seen grown law enforcement officers just wince in pain. It’s just horrible,” Owen County Prosecutor Don VanDerMoere said.

Indiana State Police say they don’t anticipate any additional arrests, but the investigation is still ongoing.

Shaylyn Ammerman (Provided Photo/Jessica Mae Stewart)
Shaylyn Ammerman (Provided Photo/Jessica Mae Stewart)

According to court documents, Parker admitted to his step-father on Sunday night that he acted alone in kidnapping Shaylyn Ammerman. Parker’s step-father said that Parker admitted to raping and murdering the child and pouring bleach on both of their bodies in an attempt to destroy DNA, Parker then burned the girl’s clothing and pacifier, he told his step-father, according to documents. The step-father also said that Parker intended to try to confuse investigators by accusing one of Shaylyn’s family members.

Forensic pathologist Dr. Donna Stewart performed the autopsy. Stewart specializes in pediatric autopsies involving sexual battery and molestation. She called the case the worst case of sexual trauma she had seen in her career. It was determined that Shaylyn was beaten, raped, smothered and strangled.

“The types of things that are alleged to have happened, they’re just atrocious,” VanDerMoere said.

On March 23, 1-year-old Shaylyn was reported missing.

Family members say she was stolen out of her crib.

Court documents state that Parker had been at the residence of Justin Ammerman, Shaylyn’s father, on March 22.

A total of five people were in the residence, including Justin’s mother and brother. Parker and Ammerman’s brother, Adam, had been consuming alcohol, according to court documents.

(WISH Photo)
(WISH Photo)

Adam Ammerman stated that he thought he saw a foot dangling as Parker walked out of the house in the early morning hours on March 23.

On March 24, Indiana State Police found a body that they say is the body of Shaylyn Ammerman. ISP said the body matched the description of the missing one-year-old. Parker was arrested the same day.

Investigators said that Parker showed them where Shaylyn’s body was located by using Google Maps.

Parker appeared in court via video at 1 p.m. on Monday according to the Owen County Jail. He pleaded not guilty and asked a judge to appoint him an attorney.

His trial is currently set for August 10.

Investigators are continuing to work the case. Indiana State Police said more arrests were not anticipated to occur on Monday.

The community has since rallied together following the case.

On Friday night, Family of God church held a vigil for baby Shaylyn.

“The thing that holds the community together is knowing that our little girl is safe with God now,” said Owen County Sheriff Sam Hobbs last week.

Businesses offered free food, drink and amenities to law enforcement and search crews last week.

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