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Dad charged for beating toddler at Vancouver motel

Kyle Stephen Holder faces attempted murder charge

VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) – A 32-year-old man is charged with attempted murder on Wednesday morning after his daughter was left critically injured.

Kyle Stephen Holder was arrested on Tuesday night for beating and kicking his 2 year-old daughter at the Sunnyside Motel. The sheriff's office originally reported the toddler was a boy.

Investigators say Holder attacked the girl while she and her mother were asleep in a motel room, where all three were staying. Holder allegedly walked into the room, "picked her [the girl] up, walked her over to the window of the motel room and proceeded to throw her out the open window onto the cement walkway," according to court document.

The child's mother told investigators that Holder then walked outside, picked the girl up, and "threw her to the ground multiple times," according to court documents.

A man and a woman at the motel heard the screaming and came outside.

Don Gilbert told detectives that he saw the child lying face down on the concrete and that Holder was "stomping on her head with his foot." Gilbert also said he saw Holder pick the girl up and throw the toddler onto the ground.

Gilbert hit Holder with a baseball bat in an attempt to stop him from attacking the girl.

"I reached behind the door and got my baseball bat, chased him out in the street, hit him once in the back. He had the baby by the feet, took her to the curb and just slammed her down, that's when I cracked him in the skull," Gilbert tells KOIN 6 News.

As Holder was being transported to the hospital for an injury to his head, he told the deputy "I did not want to kill her, but I had to," according to court documents. He added, "I had to do this, I knew I had to crush her head."

Holder went on to tell investigators, while in the hospital, that "I had to hit her in the head and stomp her."

Family reacts

Holder's aunt, Shelia Jones, spoke to KOIN 6 News by phone from her home in Georgia. She said Holder had called his mother recently to talk to her about spiritual things.

"He felt like the devil was trying to attack him from within," she said. "That he needed her to pray for him and they prayed for a long time."

Jones says Holder's alleged actions are unthinkable.

"That baby is his pride and joy. He loves her to death. He would never hurt her. Kyle is not a devil, he's not, he's a loving father," said Jones. "Anything she did, even the smile or the talking, he was just elated with it. You would see it all over him how much he loved that child."

The child's mother is with her at the hospital, where she is in critical condition.

"I hope and pray she comes out of this ok because the whole family will be just devastated," Jones said.

A motive for the beating has not been released.

The Clark County Prosecuting Attorney's Office asked for a $1 million bail.

Holder will be back in court on July 8.


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