Accused killer of Vancouver girl held on $5M bail

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VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) — Ryan Burge, the man accused of killing his girlfriend’s 5-year-old daughter, is being held on $5 million bail.

Ryan Burge is charged with murder and the assault of a child in the death of Hartley Anderson at the Madison Park Apartments on Friday. 

The arrest warrant for Burge said he had been babysitting Hartley all day Friday. When her mother, Natasha, came home, she found Hartley badly bleeding. 

She was rushed to PeaceHealth Medical Center and then transferred to Randall Children’s Hospital. But she was pronounced dead shortly after she arrived.

Burge reportedly told Vancouver police Hartley hurt herself throwing a tantrum and thrusting her own head into the wall.

But a neurosurgeon who examined her told detectives Hartley had a hemispheric stroke and a massive brain swell — and she couldn’t have done this to herself.

In asking for the $5 million bail, the prosecutor said “there were multiple impacts on the drywall in the apartment,” where Hartley was injured and “there were hair strands found inside some of those impacts.”

He also noted Burge had previously been convicted and sentenced to 72 months for conspiracy to commit arson, plus other arrests for obstruction and assault.

Family members could be heard sobbing during the court appearance. 

About 1:40 into the 4-minute arraignment, Hartley’s biological father tried to rush toward Burge but was restrained by courtroom deputies.

Authorities said the girl was unconscious and had severe head trauma when emergency responders first arrived.

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