Family: Girl, 3, has to learn to walk, eat after stepfather beat her

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Kilah Davenport (left) and Joshua Houser. (Photos courtesy: WSOC-TV)

INDIAN TRAIL, N.C. — The family of a 3-year-old from Union County who has been in a coma since a beating last month by her stepfather says the girl will have to go through rehabilitation to relearn how to walk, talk and eat.

On Wednesday, the family of Kilah Davenport — who has been in intensive care in the hospital since being beaten by her 22-year-old stepfather about three weeks ago — told WSOC-TV that Kilah can now breathe on her own and is out of the ICU.

The family previously told the station that Kilah would have to get sustenance through a feeding tube for a portion of her recovery.

The stepfather, Joshua Houser, injured Kilah’s head on May 16 while he was watching her at their Indian Trail home.  The girl’s mother, Kirbi Davenport, was at work when the beating occurred.

Doctors had to remove part of Kilah’s skull to relieve swelling and bleeding in her brain.

Investigators have not released a motive in the attack.

The couple had been married for about ten months when the attack happened; and the mother is pregnant with Houser’s child.

Houser was jailed under a $1 million bond and charged with felony child abuse.  Additional charges are pending.

The suspect also had a criminal record prior to the attack which included a charge of assault on a government official.

The family said they are now pushing lawmakers to require convicted child abusers to register similar to the way sex offenders do.


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