Thursday, November 29, 2007

Closure

by Joyce Tremel

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a post about Baby Grace, the child whose body was found in a plastic container on an island in Galveston Bay.



Baby Grace now has a name: Riley Ann Sawyers. Riley's mother and her new husband were arrested over the weekend and have admitted to torturing and killing her on July 24th. They beat her with leather belts, held her head under water in the bathtub, then threw her across the room, slamming her head onto a tile floor. (Read Affidavit of Probable Cause.)

After her death, the mother, Kimberly Ann Trenor, and her husband, Royce Clyde Zeigler, went to Wal-Mart and purchased the blue plastic container, along with other items used to hide and dispose of Riley's body. They hid her in a shed on the property for two months, then dumped her off the Galveston Causeway.

Investigators were led to the couple after they received a phone call from Riley's paternal grandmother in Ohio, Sheryl Sawyers. Her son Robert, and Trenor were childhood sweethearts and lived with Sheryl Sawyers until Trenor moved to Texas to be with Zeigler, whom she met on a gaming site on the internet. After Riley's murder, Trenor had told everyone that Riley had been taken away by child services and she was never reported missing.

At this point, Trenor and Zeigler have been charged with injuring a child and tampering with evidence. According to legal analyst, Brian Wice, this might be a strategic move on the part of the Galveston County District Attorney's Office. As more evidence is uncovered, the charge could eventually be upgraded to capital murder.

This very sad ending for such a beautiful little girl has touched the hearts of the investigators. "Any way you look at it, we carry a piece of her with us and will always carry a little piece of her with us," said Maj. Ray Tuttoilmondo. "She's still our little girl."

22 comments:

Tory said...

What an awful story! I wish child protective services HAD been there.

Tory said...

P.S. Thanks for letting us know the outcome, Joyce.

Annette said...

Absolutely tragic. This breaks my heart. What an adorable child.

Nancy said...

Gad, people can be horrible. I've got jet lag, so at 4am I finished reading an article in Time magazine about morality----how the same people have the capacity for great kindness and hideous evil. It's a good article---especially for those of us who write about people in moral dilemmas. Here's a link, which I hope works. (If not, go to Time.com and scroll down to find the article about evil.) http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0,28804,1685055_1685076_1686619,00.html

ramona said...

Joyce, I just read a new story about this. Last line said the woman (I have a hard time using the word "mother" to apply to her) is pregnant.

Joyce said...

Ramona, I read that too. Why is it that people like that seem to reproduce like rabbits?

Annette said...

It would be my guess that they're not trying to reproduce. They just haven't figured out that there are ways to prevent that from happening as a result of...well, you know.

Felicia Donovan said...

My heart goes out to the investigators in this case. People have no idea how deeply affected even the most seasoned police officer can be with this type of an investigation. Many have children of their own and when they have to investigate the horrendous, meaningless, brutal murder of a child, it hits home. I applaud all the professional law enforcement officers out there, my co-workers, who do this work to serve and protect.

Felicia Donovan
THE BLACK WIDOW AGENCY Series
www.feliciadonovan.com
www.blackwidowagency.com

Joyce said...

Amen, Felicia!

Cathy said...

WHY? Why would anyone, let alone a mother, do this to an adorable child? I just don't get it.

So Joyce, I think there's a crime novel in this, and you're the one to write it. You have the knowlege and expertise and interest.

kristine said...

Thank you for letting us know the outcome of this horrible, horrible case, Joyce.

It makes me angry and sad to hear the details. My heart breaks for that precious little girl and there's no punishment strong enough for those (I also use the term loosely) parents.

Lee Lofland said...

This is one time when I'm all for capital punishment. And even that's too good for these monsters. Lethal injection might be the easy way out. They're young, so maybe being confined to a maximum security prison cell for twenty-three hours a day for seventy or eighty years is appropriate. Make them suffer.

The more I type the madder I get. There is no proper punishment for people like this.

Gina said...

This is a difficult one for me to put my two cents worth in. My gut reaction is with Lee, except I really want to say the hell with the legal system and go kick the @#!*% out of these folks myself. Hardly an appropriate response for a liberal lawyer like me.

Lee Lofland said...

I'm about as liberal as they come, but I'm with Gina. They both need a good, old-fashioned ass kicking. Then the justice sysyem can warehouse them until they're well enough to walk to the execution chamber.

Tom said...

They need to not go after the death penalty here.

Why? Because they can then be locked up with REAL criminals. Really evil ones. But ones that have a heart. You do not mess with kids. They will savagely beat these monsters and they will die the way that Riley Ann did.

Yes, Jeffrey Dahmer did not get the death penalty but he got a death sentence. He dies in a very painful and vicious way. That is what will happen to them if they get life.

Joyce said...

I agree. Put them in with the general population in the prison and see what happens to them. The same goes for the man in Pittsburgh who raped his girlfriend's TEN MONTH OLD daughter and it killed her.

ABC+1Mom said...

DNA just came back.... the baby is now officially Riley... and now she can go home! Just wanted to let you know!

Jackpot Lady said...

Take that unborn baby away from that horrible excuse for a mother and throw her carcass to the alligators.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the pregnancy of that "thing" loosly described as a mother, they probably don't even know what caused it. Did someone say "rabbits"?

William said...

Spring Texas is about ten minutes from home; Galveston is maybe forty-minutes south.

For those who don't know me, I work full-time as a computer forensics investigator. As part of that, I've dealt with the "Dark Side" of the Internet and what can happen to children. I thought I'd seen it all, thought I was a professional, objective Tough Guy...until this.

Watching the news one night, hearing what happened, how it happened, and the photo of the "mother", I sat there and thought some exceptionally ugly thoughts. In my opinion, the "C" word is not foul enough. The mouth-breather who actually did this looks like the type who would be amused hours on end staring at a naked light bulb.

Right now, at this moment, as far as I am concerned, Dirty Harry is a wimp, and Charles Bronson has gotten soft.

Sorry if that offends anyone.

Joyce said...

I'm with you, William.

Tom said...

There are things that walk like humans, but are missing some vital bits of humanity. The seeds of our monster myths come from them.