A mother originally charged with murder in the death of a Lincoln County boy pleaded guilty and was sentenced on a lesser charge, while the mother’s boyfriend is scheduled for a jury trial in the child’s death and could still face the death penalty.
Two-year-old Braxton Danker of Wellston died May 13, 2018 from a subdural hematoma due to a beating, with cause of death listed as homicide, according to the medical examiner’s report.
The toddler’s mother, Judith Danker, 19, and her reported boyfriend, Khristian Martzall, 27, were both initially charged in May 2018 with murder in the first-degree, child abuse.
Braxton had significant injuries that were noted during the autopsy, including a subdural hemorrhage, old rib fractures, as well as numerous contusions and abrasions, the autopsy report shows.
Lincoln County prosecutors previously filed a Bill of Particulars to have a death penalty option, upon conviction, against the two charged in the child’s death.
At the time the charges were filed, then prosecutors reported this was one of the worst child abuse cases they had seen and that Braxton spent his last days of life suffering.
According to Lincoln County court records, Danker entered a guilty plea to a lesser charge involving child abuse with the state’s recommended plea bargain. She waived a pre-sentence investigation and was sentenced to 25 years with the Department of Corrections and she must serve 85 percent of that time, court records show.
The mother originally charged with murder in the death of a Lincoln County boy pleaded guilty and was sentenced Tuesday on a lesser charge, while the
District Attorney Allan Grubb confirms secretary, Asia Davis, has been fired after taking pictures of a dead 2-year-old, and then sending the photos to her best friend through Snapchat.
The photos were taken last year by the Medical Examiner’s Office after the death of Braxton Danker.
“These were six very morbid pictures of a child on an autopsy table,” said Grubb.
However, Braxton’s alleged murder and the evidence leak, took place before Grubb was in office. He assumed the title of district attorney in January, but said his investigator discovered Davis sent the messages in October.
“(Trinity Walls) Ms. Walls then recorded that from a different device, and it appears she held on to it for about six months, and then she decided, at some point in the past two or three weeks, to send that to the danker family,” said Grubb.
He added he cannot speculate on the timing of the release, but he said that those involved share family ties.
“The Danker family member she sent it to, and Ms. Walls share a father of a child.” Grubb said. “It appears she held on to it from October 2018, until sometime around April 25th of 2019.”
He said soon after that Davis was fired.
Now, Grubb wonders if this incident will impact the upcoming jury trial of Martzall, who is facing the death penalty.
“The stuff is out there. I wish it could be deleted. The family does not need to see these photos. The general public does not need to see these photos,” said Grubb.
The district attorney said this evidence leak appears to be an isolated incident.
At this point, no criminal charges have been filled.
News 9 reached out to Davis, who did apologize for the leak. She released the following statement:
“I would like to apologize to the family and the community. It was never my intent for any communication about this case to be made public.”
“The child was covered in numerous physical injuries,” First Assistant District Attorney Adam Panter. “He passed away soon after arriving at the hospital.”
Danker allegedly admitted to police she used objects to hit her son multiple times.
“We have multiple bruises, we have open sores, we have spots where the skin has been torn away,” Panter said. “There’s a possibility of charges coming down the line for failing to report the physical abuse to the child.”
LINCOLN COUNTY, Okla. - A second arrest has been made in connection to the death of a 2-year-old boy. The boy's mother, 19-year-old Judith Cheyann Danker, was arrested Monday in connection to the death of her son, Braxton Danker. Officials say Tuesday night, they arrested Danker's boyfriend...