Investigator in Teghan Skiba murder trial describes shed where 4-year-old was allegedly tortured

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SMITHFIELD, N.C. (WTVD) -- There was captivating new testimony Tuesday and Wednesday in the trial of a man accused of torturing and killing a four-year-old girl in Johnston County, according to WTVD.

In July 2010, Teghan Skiba was admitted to the Johnston Medical Center by then-21-year-old Jonathan Richardson after he claimed she had fallen off the bed. However, doctors found she had cuts, bruises, and bite marks on her body.

Teghan Alyssa Skiba

Teghan Alyssa Skiba

Skiba died days later. An autopsy revealed that the girl died from a blow to the head.

A nurse testified that she went after Richardson in the emergency room. Mary Alison Butler said she jumped on top of him, grabbed his neck, and tried to rip out his throat.

Butler said she was overcome with anger and adrenalin when looking at the extensive injuries the child had and then confronted Richardson.

"It was horrible. We see a lot of stuff. At that point I couldn't take any more and I looked at him and said, "Oh my God,'" said Butler.

Richardson is accused of torturing and killing Teghan Skiba in the summer of 2010 over a ten day period while Teghan's mom, Helen Roxanne Reyes, was deployed for training in the Army Reserves.

Authorities say Richardson was living with Teghan in an air conditioned barn behind the home of Richardson's grandparents on the outskirts of Smithfield. There was no running water, no bathroom and just a single air mattress on the floor to sleep on.

On Wednesday, a crime scene investigator described to the jury every single piece of evidence that she uncovered in the shed, which was littered with trash and feces and smelled of urine.

Richardson has been charged with first-degree murder, and felony child abuse inflicting serious bodily injury.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty against him.

Read more: WTVD


  • Spellegrin

    That lady should be given a medal.. they should have given her the gun and let her do what should have been done!

  • John

    I hope that guy burns in hell. There isn’t a word in the dictionary to describe the hatred I have towards people like him.

  • kathy

    This beast should be put down, so he’ll never hurt anyone again. His DA is basically saying that he didn’t know he was doing wrong, and abusing her was the only way he knew how to show her love. Then why try to lie while at the hospital about how she obtained her injuries? Why try to run? Another burning question I have is why in the hell didn’t Jonathan’s grandparents hear this child’s screams? I find it sad that they didn’t intervene any during those 10 days of abuse. If I had a mentally disturbed grandson with anger issues, and he had his girlfriend and girlfriend’s daughter living in my shed (WHICH NEVER WOULD HAPPEN IN THE FIRST PLACE) in my backyard with a freaking LOCK in the door, I’d be all up in it!!! Too bad they don’t have to answer for their apparent lack of interest in this matter. They well could have saved this poor child. The mother of Teghan should be locked away forever, and this Jonathan beast needs to die….SOON…

    • Theresa

      Kathy you said it all right there. Here is a question….the mother stated she knew he was doing this before. So does she have the same symptoms as Jonathan??? Why didn’t she stop him, why could she be the mother to that poor little girl. The mother, Jonathan, and his grandparents should all just rot in Hell. If I was an attorney, I wouldn’t even consider taking the case. They don’t deserv to even have the slightes chance. As far as Mary Alison Butler, you are a remarkable person, thank you for being there for that little girl. You are an angel.

  • nicci

    The grandparents “didn’t hear” her screaming because she was just a little Spanish girl and they live in Johnston County. Looks like not much has changed in JC since my mom got us out of there. Although it is surprising to see people living there who care deeply like Ms. Butler.

  • Kathy

    Nicci: I’m not sure where you’re going with your reply. Are you saying that nobody cared about the child because she was Spanish and living in Johnston County? How sad if that’s what you see here. Bottom line is….mentally disturbed mean man abuses and kills child. Child’s mother no doubt has her own set of issues that helped to allow this child to die way too soon. As far as all the other adults in this child’s life, nobody really seemed to care about her. Nobody took an interest in her life. What a tragedy, no matter if she was Spanish, or English, or German. Tragedies happen in Johnston County, just like they happen all over the world. And I don’t know if you’ve ever looked around at all the (non-abused) Spanish folks living in Johnston County lately. This county is full of immigrants, some legal and most probably illegal. My point is this…it’s wrong to insinuate that nearby adults “didn’t hear her screams” solely because she is a Spanish girl living in Jo. Co. That comment sounds like it’s wrapped up with prejudice. It’s sad that Jonathan’s grandparents never went out and looked in their own shed. They knew how screwed up Jonathan was. Why didn’t they just go outside and take a peep in that shed? If they were that terrified of Jonathan, they should have never agreed to let him live on their property. What a mixed up mess. I know those grandparents are good people. I happen to know them, and their 2 daughters. I just can’t understand why they agreed to let him live in that building/shed, knowing a little girl was living with him. True, Jonathan might would’ve killed Teghan anyway, no matter where he lived. But how sad that she is dead, and now the grandparents are being drug through all of this. Not to mention, the grandad I understand is not in the best of health. My heart breaks for all abused kids. I wish abuse was a thing of the past.

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