Kalamazoo couple convicted in death of girl, 4

Associated Press

Kalamazoo – A woman and her boyfriend have been convicted in the death of her 4-year-old daughter, who was found wrapped in blankets and duct tape at their Kalamazoo home.

A jury convicted Matthew Longenecker Wednesday of first-degree murder and first-degree child abuse in the asphyxiation death of Desaray Thompson. A separate jury found Kelly Ballinger guilty of involuntary manslaughter and first-degree child abuse in her daughter’s July death. They both were convicted of possession of meth.

Authorities say the couple restrained Desaray with blankets and duct tape the night she died, including a blanket placed over her face.

A medical examiner says there was evidence of past abuse, such as bruising, cuts and likely a skull fracture.

Ballinger’s sentencing is scheduled for April 30 and Longenecker’s for May 7.