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Father charged in 3-year-old daughter's death pleads not guilty

Olivia Ann Jansen.jpg
Posted at 10:15 AM, Jan 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-26 11:15:12-05

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Howard Jansen, charged with killing his three-year-old daughter, Olivia Jansen, pleaded not guilty on Tuesday morning.

Jansen waived his right to a preliminary hearing, which would not require the prosecution to present evidence to go forward.

The hearing took place virtually in Wyandotte County court division 4 with District Court Judge Michael Russell presiding.

Jansen's girlfriend, Jacqulyn Kirkpatrick, is also charged in Olivia's death.

They both face charges of first-degree murder, aggravated endangering of a child and criminal desecration in connection with Olivia's death.

Olivia Jansen was found dead on July 10, 2020, in a wooded area not far from the house where Jansen and Kirkpatrick reported her missing. Severe bruising and a cut on her head showed signs of abuse.

Reports show that police were called to Jansen's home several times for welfare checks and reports of abuse in 2020 before Olivia ultimately died. The Department For Children and Families also launched multiple investigations into Olivia's welfare but found no reason to remove her from her home.

The child's files were sealed following a request from the defense in order to keep them private until court proceedings regarding her death are finished.

Deputy District Attorney Crystalyn Ellis mentioned jailhouse phone calls between Jansen and Kirkpatrick at this week's hearing that the prosecution has requested to access.

A virtual status hearing for Jansen is scheduled for Feb. 17 at 10:30 a.m.

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