RAPID CITY, S.D. — A South Dakota woman accused of beating her two-year-old son to death in 2016 for wetting his bed has pleaded guilty to murder.
Katrina Shangreaux, 30, of Porcupine, reportedly made a vulgar gesture at her sister-in-law as she left the courtroom on Friday, according to the Rapid City Journal.
She said in a written statement that she beat the boy as she thought he was being defiant by wetting his bed as the two had been having arguments surrounding potty training. She also thought the toddler gave her the “side eye.”
Shangreaux, who says she came home drunk and on pain medication that morning, outlined that she consequently beat the boy with her fists and a belt, and then threw him to the ground and kicked him in the head and abdomen. She also bit him several times.
She states that she stopped hitting the child when she noticed that he looked “different” and she “realized how badly she had injured him.”
Shangreaux then tried to give Kylen apple juice, but he collapsed on the floor, defecating on himself. Prosecutors believe Shangreaux and her mother cleaned up the boy’s blood, feces and clothes before eventually calling for help.
Her mother has been charged with being an accessory to murder and tampering with evidence, and reportedly provided “multiple excuses” as to why the boy was hurt.
Kylen was pronounced dead at the hospital, and doctors found that he had a fractured skull and multiple bruises and bite marks. It is believed that he had been dead for four hours before arriving at the facility.
An autopsy revealed that the child had bruises on 70 percent of his body—some fresh, some old—and one of his ribs was fractured. He also had bleeding on his brain and abdomen.
Shangreaux fled after learning that her son was deceased, but was captured and charged with child abuse and first-degree murder. As part of a plea deal, her previous charges will be dropped and Shangreaux will be sentenced for second-degree murder. She faces potential life in prison for the crime.
According to reports, Shangreaux’s sister-in-law, Angie, had wanted custody of Kylen, and had him in her care for a year, but the Oglala Sioux tribal court ordered that the child be returned to his mother since she was a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe.
Shangreaux held hostility toward Angie and court records state that the boy said his aunt’s name during the ordeal, which is believed to have further fueled Shangreaux’s anger. It is also believed to be the reason why Shangreaux made a vulgar gesture at her upon leaving the courtroom.
Kylen had only been living with his mother for one month before he was beaten to death, People Magazine reports.
The boy’s father, James Shangreaux, Sr., is currently in prison on child abuse charges surrounding a baby he had with another woman. That child also died.
As previously reported, Jesus said in Mark 7:20-23 that murder begins in the heart.
“That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man,” He taught. “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile the man.”
It is why He instructed, as written in John 3:3, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Romans 13:8-10 also exhorts, “Owe no man anything but to love one another, for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. For this: ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery,’ ‘Thou shalt not kill,’ ‘Thou shalt not steal,’ ‘Thou shalt not bear false witness,’ ‘Thou shalt not covet,’ and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying namely, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.’ Love worketh no ill to his neighbor. Therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.”