Oklahoma woman sentenced in child abuse case

BY TIFFANY GIBSON tgibson@opubco.com Modified: November 7, 2011 at 9:49 pm •  Published: November 7, 2011

Outside the courthouse, one man stood up and shouted, “There will be no peace 'til there's justice!”

Theodore Nibbs, 58, was holding a sign with Naomi's photo on it. He said he is a member of the Cheyenne tribe and that justice was not served by the guilty verdict or sentencing. He said if the victim had been white, maybe Holder would have received a harsher punishment.

Other people agreed with him, thrusting signs in the air and saying, “It's still legal in Oklahoma to kill an Indian.”

Child's death

Naomi and a sibling were taken from Kala Whitecrow in February 2008. The girl went to live with Holder in September 2008 and died on Jan. 20, 2009.

A medical examiner's report showed there were scrapes and bruises on Naomi's face, chest, back, legs, right buttock and head, as well as old and new scabs.

An Indiana pathologist ruled the child died of blunt-force injury to the head, abdomen and extremities. A Texas expert testified neurological problems such as a seizure could have led to her death.

Letter to judge

Naomi's aunt, Debby Whitecrow, talked to reporters after the hearing and read a letter her sister, Kala Whitecrow, wrote to the judge. She wasn't allowed to read the letter in the courtroom before the sentencing.

“The $5,000 fine is only a small, mandatory punishment from Holder's bank account. This punishment does not address Holder,” Kala Whitecrow wrote.

The letter said Holder deserves time in prison, so she can experience “the pain and suffering Naomi had to endure.”

Debby Whitecrow said Kala Whitecrow has taken many steps to clean up her life and is still dealing with the loss of her daughter.

“I'm asking the honorable judge to walk in my moccasins and feel my pain and make the right decision and to sentence Amy to a prison sentence that fits the real quality of her actions,” Kala Whitecrow wrote.

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