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Piper Hayden Hester

June 24, 2009 - August 2, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial

In a frantic 911 call, Kristen Hester can be heard screaming and cussing at her husband while she tries to save the life of her daughter. At 3:28 a.m., Kristen called 911 after seeing her husband passed out on the floor next to their child, Piper, who was covered in blood and not breathing. Kristen can be heard telling Nathaniel Hester that he is going to jail and asking him what he was high on. When Paramedics arrived, they found that Piper was already dead and her father had left the home. Nathaniel returned home about an hour later and was immediately tasered, he was drunk. Nathaniel and Kristen were taken in for questioning and while Kristen was allowed to go home, Nathaniel was arrested on charges of cruelty to children and obstruction of justice and he was held without bail. If Piper was already dead, why would the charged be cruelty to children? I will NEVER understand how these laws work.

An autopsy done on Piper showed that all of the ribs on one side of her body were broken, she had a broken leg and a skull fracture. The cause of death was listed an blunt force trauma to her head and torso. Coroner Bobbie Dixon said it was the worse case of abuse she had ever seen on a child.

In June of 2010, Nathaniel Roderick Hester, who was 30 years old at the time, plead guilty to voluntary manslaughter though the original charge had been felony murder and cruelty to children. District Attorney, Kermit McManus, said that in order to not face the felony murder charge, Nathaniel had agreed to a plea deal where he would plead to the charge of voluntary manslaughter. Why would that deal be made? Why do these child killers almost always seem to plea their way out of what they did:

"We had negotiated a plea between us and the defendant's lawyer, Chris Townley, from
Ringgold. Hester entered a guilty plea to an accusation we filed charging him with voluntary
manslaughter. That charge has a maximum penalty of 20 years. The first 18 years will be
served in confinement"
DA Kermit McManus

Nathaniel was sentenced to 18 years in prison with two years of probation to follow his release. It came out during the court proceedings with Assistant District Attorney prosecuting the case, that Nathaniel had been high on Cocaine, Meth Amphetamine and Marijuana as well as being drunk from drinking Vodka. Kristen had been sleeping while her husband got high and drunk and then proceeded to beat their daughter to death. I have to wonder how a mother could sleep through the cries that must have come from Piper during that beating. When Kristen woke up around midnight, saw that Piper was not in her crib and that was when she found her daughter dead on the floor next to her husband.

"Nothing can bring her back, take away our pain and sense of loss, or undo what happened.
But today's sentencing brought some closure and some sense of satisfaction as we finally heard
Nathan Hester take responsibility in court for the death of his daughter. Knowing he will serve real
time for his crime affords us a measure of relief, we are appreciative of the efforts of the law
enforcement community and the district attorney's office as they have investigated and we are thank-
ful for the support and love shown to us by our friends, coworkers, neighbors and the community"
Terry O. - Kristen's Aunt

In true Defense Attorney style, Chris Townley said that the death of Piper was a terrible and tragic situation:

"It's one that we'll never know the answer to in all of the details. Mr. Hester will never know,
under the circumstances I don't think anyone can specifically what the perfect result in the
sentencing is because we'll never know the facts"

REALLY? Because I KNOW the perfect sentence, life in prison without parole. He KILLED his daughter, she's dead, she suffered before she died, he doesn't deserve to EVER be a free man again. Chris was asked if he felt that way because of Nathaniel's condition that night:

"As far as him not knowing what occurred? Yes. I don't think there's anybody that was part
of the investigation who feels he was withholding information. He just didn't have the
information because he was intoxicated"

What a stupid thing to say. ALL the information anyone needed to know was there, he killed his daughter, high or not, she's dead and Nathaniel did it. Nothing more needs to be know, we don't need to know all the nitty gritty disgusting details, he did it, he should be in prison for life PERIOD! A member of the Family Support Council agrees with me:

"An 18 year sentence doesn't atone for the loss of Piper. Sadly, nothing can. There is
help in our community for people who can't cope with their stress and demands of
parenthood. If a parent feels overwhelmed with their responsibilities, they can call the
Department Of Family And Children's Services at  706-272-2331 or Family Support
Council at 706-272-7919 for help. No one wants to hurt their child, they need to seek
assistance before they reach that point. Not doing so, destroys lives"
Holly Ridley

This page was created on June 25, 2014
Death occurred in the state of Georgia

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