Verdict reached in Fairchild murder trial

Verdict reached in Fairchild murder trial
Updated: Mar. 19, 2018 at 5:28 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

HOBART, OK (KSWO) - A Kiowa County jury has reached a verdict in the murder trial of Kelly Fairchild.

Fairchild was found guilty of the 2015 death of her 18-month-old son Lane.

Jurors reached that after several hours of deliberations, which came after the state called their final witness this morning, Dr. Ryan Brown, a child abuse expert.

He walked jurors through autopsy photos of Lane, touching on each specific injury that Lane had on his body. He said that in his opinion, Lane had suffered several impacts to his body, saying that each of his several bruises was a separate time he was struck. He said cuts and bruises to Lane's cheeks and ears were particularly troubling to him. He says those areas generally have lots of loose skin, making them very difficult to bruise naturally.

The state rested after Brown's testimony and the defense began calling witnesses. First on the stand was Dolores Baker, Fairchild's grandmother who says she has raised her since birth. She testified that in stressful and traumatic situations, Fairchild routinely shuts down, saying she acts quote "like a zombie." That falls in line with how doctors and police officers described Fairchild while she was at the hospital.
In cross-examination, the prosecution asked Baker if she had ever been around Fairchild while she was high, to which she said no. They said that meant that Baker couldn't possibly know how Fairchild would react to the situation if she had been smoking marijuana, which they allege she had been on the night Lane died.

Jurors then heard closing arguments from both sides. The state opened by saying that today is the day that Lane finally gets justice and walked through the testimony jurors heard over the last few days. He said that Fairchild did not perform her legal duties to care for a child, putting him in harm's way the second she took him to Gregory Miller's home. These pictures taken the night after Lane's death of the brutal conditions of the home were again shown to the jury. The state again focused on fact that whiskey, marijuana, a pipe and bong were all found within reach of Lane. He showed pictures of Lane's injuries one final time and asked the jury to find Fairchild guilty and sentence her to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

In the defense's closing, he urged jurors to not use emotion when reaching a verdict, to only evaluate the facts.
He said that Kelly was asleep when Lane sustained his injuries and that she had nothing to do with them. He said that Kelly was a loving mother and that she shouldn't be judged because she didn't react to Lane's death how others wanted her to.
The defense said that Kelly acknowledges she shouldn't have taken Lane to Miller's house and should not have smoked marijuana in front of him, but said it was a mistake and does not make her a murderer.

In the state's final closing he disagreed, saying failing to fulfill your legal obligation to take care of your kids is not just a simple mistake.

The jury recommended a sentence of life with the possibility of parole.

Copyright 2018 KSWO. All rights reserved.