US woman charged in 1957 death of daughter

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

LONDON - A US woman has been charged with killing her seven-month-old daughter, 53 years after the infant’s death, a media report here said Tuesday.

Ruby Klokow, 74, was arrested following a two-year investigation that uncovered a number of abuse suffered by her other children, the Daily Mail reported.

Her daughter Jeaneen died in 1957 when her sudden death was ruled accidental after Klokow said she had fallen off a sofa and hit her head.

Two years ago Klokow’s son James, 55, went to police with his long-held suspicion that his mother had killed Jeaneen at their home in Sheboygan city, Wisconsin.

He said the family had suffered years of abuse when their mother had been drinking.

Police reviewed their decades-old reports and searched for hospital and social service records as part of their investigation, the daily said.

The body of the newborn was exhumed and a new examination ordered. Another of her children, Scott who died in 1964, was also exhumed and examined for abuse.

Two pathologists who reviewed the autopsy results agreed that Klokow’s claim of a 16-inch fall from a sofa could hardly have caused the girl’s injuries.

During investigation, Klokow admitted she had been “mean” to her daughter and her son Scott.

According to a criminal complaint, Klokow admitted she was frustrated that both Jeaneen and James were crying at the same time. She said she grabbed Jeaneen from her stroller and threw her toward the couch.

She told detectives she wished she had never had children and acknowledged being abusive towards them.

The complaint detailed a long list of other abuse against the children, including allegations that she broke James’s arm and nose in separate incidents, and injured his knees by kicking him with steel-toed boots on multiple occasions.

Prosecutors at the Sheboygan County Sheriff charged Klokow with second degree murder. She faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Filed under: Accidents and Disasters

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