KALAMAZOO, Mich. – New information in the suspicious death of a 4-year-old girl was released Wednesday, and paints a disturbing picture of the home life of Kharisma Richardson.
FOX 17 News obtained new documents from a police interview with the child’s babysitter that detail disturbing allegations of abuse and neglect.
It’s been a little more than a month since Kharisma's body was found in her Kalamazoo home late March. The babysitter told investigators that Kharisma stayed with her for a 3-4 week period before being returned to her mother, Daveeta Walker, just two weeks before she died.
Preliminary tests from investigators show that Kharisma had been beaten with a belt, punched in the face and chest, and suffered burns bad enough to blister her hands and feet.
The amount of water Kharisma was allowed to drink was limited, the babysitter said. Kharisma on at least one occasion was said to have drank water out of the toilet.
Kharisma was also recently toilet-trained by the babysitter, but said that would wet the bed occasionally. As punishment, Walker allegedly withheld food from her. The babysitter said Kharisma would eat to the point of pain at her house and start crying.
On one occasion, the babysitter told police she received a text from Walker, telling her to, "Come get your friend. She's begging for food and money at Chucky Cheese. I'm kicking her butt. You better come get her before I hurt her."
The babysitter also told police the 4-year-old was seen crawling on the ground because of burns to her feet just a day before her death. What exactly caused those burns is still not known, with conflicting stories given to detectives by several relatives and friends.
The sitter said she contemplated going to police but didn't think her story would be useful.
Detectives have called Kharisma’s death suspicious. So far, no arrests have been made in the case.