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Teghan Alyssa Skiba
  July 6, 2006 - July 19, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial

Jonathan Richardson, who was 21 years old at the time, arrived at the hospital the daughter of his girlfriend, Helen Roxanne Reyes. Teghan was four years old and Jonathan told the doctors that the child had fallen off of the bed. Doctors examined the child and found that she had bruises, bite marks and cuts on her body, certainly nothing that could have happened by falling off of the bed. Teghan died a few days later and Jonathan was facing first degree murder charges and felony child abuse charges. Helen was going to be away for only ten days for Army Reserves training and she never expected to lose her daughter while she was gone, then again, it was speculated that Helen knew she was leaving her child with a child abuser.

For the ten days that she was gone, Jonathan had been living with Teghan in a barn behind his grandparents house. Why were they living in a barn? Helen was deployed to New Mexico and left her daughter with this man, though there were questions about his possible abuse of her. The barn had no running water or electricity and the two had been living there since July 14th, the day Helen left. Jonathan began abusing, beating and sexually assaulting Teghan right away and it went on for ten days.

In the past, Helen had gone to the store and when she came home, Teghan had some how managed to cut her head in the short time that she was gone. There was another time that Jonathan told Helen about spanking the child:

"He told me that he had whipped her for throwing up on his chair"


When Helen was questioned, she told Police that Teghan was afraid of Jonathan.
You're going to stay with a man who whips an obviously sick child? You're going to stay with a man and leave him alone with a child you say is AFRAID of him? You don't stay with a man like that, you see the OBVIOUS red flag and you get out, saving your daughters life.

Teghan was taken to the hospital when she stopped breathing. Jonathan told doctors that she had fallen of off the bed, though the doctors could see right away that he was lying. Teghan had cuts, bruises a head wound and bite marks on her body. It's kind of hard to fall off of a bed and end up biting yourself, but Jonathan obviously didn't think things through before coming up with an excuse for why this child was dying. Teghan was transferred to UNC, where she died a few days later.

At one point during the trial, the Judge was faced with a motion for a mistrial due to an incident outside of the courthouse. Jurors were being taken to lunch and someone started talking to them, shouting that they needed to find Jonathan guilty:

"He's guilty, I don't care what ya'll say"



That person then got into their car and drove away, but the damage had been done, as far as the defense was concerned and they asked for a mistrial. The jury was questioned to find out if the comments had in any way affected how they felt about the trial and when the Judge was satisfied that they could go on, the motion for mistrial was denied.

Helen, who was free on bond since having been arrested, was crying when she took the stand, accused of felony negligent abuse causing bodily harm and told the court that she was not testifying in order to get a better deal for herself. Helen said that she rejected every deal that was offered to her because she was not guilty:

"I am here for Teghan, for my daughter, to get justice for her, because that man murdered my baby"

Since the death of Teghan, Helen had given birth to another child, a baby girl who was by the she went to court, eight months old. Jonathan sat in court listening to what Helen said, this had been the first time they had seen each other since the child had been killed and Jonathan showed no emotion at all. Prosecutors were trying to get the death penalty for Jonathan and Helen was possibly facing a trial against her since she had already admitted that she knew he had hurt Teghan in the past.

In court, Jonathan's grandmother testified that she had seen a black eye on Teghan at one point and that she had been told the child had fallen and she said she didn't report that they were living in the barn because she didn't want Child Protective Services to take Teghan away. Helen spoke a little bit about Jonathan's personality:

"Jonathan got angry with me more when I would ask him personal questions about his personal lie.
He would have more flare-ups when he was tired or sleep"
Helen Parish Creech

Jonathan Douglas Richardson, who was 25 years old at the time, was found guilty of first degree murder, felony child abuse, kidnapping and sexual offense with a child. Emotions were running high as a video was played of Jonathan talking about telling his mother about the death of Teghan:

"I loved her to death"

Jonathan had told his mother that the little girl called him daddy and that she was no longer breathing on her own an though he didn't do it, things were not looking good for him and all he wanted to do was go to church. The trial was going into the six week mark and family was given the opportunity to give victim impact statements:

"There is so much sadness, anger, disbelief, heartache every day of our lives. We try to remember the
happy times we share with Teghan but are so saddened that there will be no more:
Sarah Skiba - Grandmother

"I'm just ready for this to be over. I hate that this wound in my heart had to be reopened"
Maira Reyes - Aunt


During the sentencing phase, Assistant District Attorney, Paul Jackson, again told the jurors about the horrible things Jonathan had done, causing Teghan to suffer. Defense Attorney, Jonathan Broun, told jurors that Jonathan had not MEANT to kill Teghan, that he had shook her so hard that it caused brain injuries and then waited too long to seek medical attention for her. The Defense Lawyer said that though she had injuries to her genitals, Jonathan never intended to sexually assault the little girl:

"This is not intended to lessen what happened, but there was no sexual intent"

I will NEVER understand how defense lawyers can say things like that with a straight face. Oh, he didn't MEAN to kill her? He only wanted to sexually abuse her, beat her and shake her until her brain died? It's all good then, he can go home now. Of course then the Defense Lawyer pulled out the "abuse" card saying that Jonathan had been abused by his own father as a child and that he suffered from, yet to be diagnosed, mental problems.

A Pedestrian testified about the abuse and torture Teghan went through:

"In my opinion, Teghan Skiba was the victim of child torture. She had more than 144 injuries, that is an
extraordinarily high number of injuries, that's a particularly harsh action and causes especially a cruel
pain and suffering much more pain and suffering perhaps than the first time the person was injured at that
site. So the presence of a new injury over and old injury will cause this child to have that much more pain
and that would be another type of action that would strongly support sadistic gratification"
Dr. Sharon Cooper

Dr. Cooper went into so much detail about Teghan had been through, that Teghan's grandparents left the courtroom. The jury had two choices for Jonathan, life in prison or death.

In Court, lawyers gave final statements before sentencing:

"Life in prison without parole is a slap on the wrist in this case. Justice demands that he receive
no better fate than he gave Teghan. Teghan did not deserve to suffer and she certainly did not
deserve to die"
Assistant District Attorney Greg Butler

It was said in court during his sentencing hearing that Jonathan took pleasure in what he did to this little Angel, though it seemed as though Jonathan Broun tried to get the jury to feel sorry for Jonathan:

"Today, we are not asking for forgiveness or leniency of Jonathan. Forgiveness would mean no
punishment and that's already been guaranteed that Jonathan is going to be punished. Leniency
would mean punishment that it not harsh and sever and no matter what you decide today, Jonathan
is going to be punished harshly and severely"

In April of 2014, it took the jury only a few hours to sentenced Jonathan Douglas Richardson death for what he did to Teghan.

Outside the courtroom, Teghan's grandfather commented: on the fact that though he was sentenced to death, there would be a long appeals process:

"They got the best they could do. He already lived three and a half years longer than my
granddaughter and now they're going to give him another seven or eight years. It's like his
life is more important than  her. She just wanted people to love her and she just showed her
love so freely and then somebody like that just come in and just tortures her, you know, hurts
her and that's, I don't know, it's hard to  put into words"

Gerald Skiba

District Attorney Susan Doyle said:

"It was very difficult. It was the most difficult case I have ever done in my career"

Site creators note: As of today, May 24, I am unable to find information about Teghan's mother going to court.



OBITUARY:


In Memory of
Teghan Alyssa Skiba
July 6, 2006 - July 19, 2010

Teghan Alyssa Skiba, 4 years old, passed away on Monday, July 19, 2010 at UNC Hospital. Born on July 6, 2006 in Raleigh; she was Helen Reyes and Jerry Skiba's little girl who loved purple, butterflies, lady bugs and her grandmother's garden.

Teggy's grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins and all those she met and saw her beautiful smile will miss her very, very much.

All services will be private; however, the family does ask that for those that would like to make memorial donations that they be directed to the Capital Bank – c/o Gerald and Sarah Skiba – 12217 Capital Blvd – Wake Forest, NC 27587.

This page was created on May 24, 2104
Death occurred in North Carolina

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