orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

November 9, 2012

Special prosecutor named in airman's toddler death


Associated Press

ABILENE, Texas — A special prosecutor will investigate a West Texas office's handling of the death of a malnourished toddler whose mother claimed her husband's deployment left her too distraught to care for her children.

The Abilene Reporter-News reports that the McLennan County District Attorney's office from Waco will lead the case.

An Abilene judge appointed the McLennan district attorney's office earlier this week.

Four Child Protective Services employees are on leave as the investigation continues into the death of 22-month-old Tamryn Klapheke, who was found unresponsive in the family home at Dyess Air Force Base.

The girl's mother, Tiffany Klapheke, faces three child injury charges.

A CPS spokesman has said the caseworker assigned to investigate allegations of neglect against the mother violated agency guidelines in closing the case.