Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom

Nov 6, 2018 – During a brief but intense hearing Monday, the prosecutor described the scene inside the apartment where the girl died, including damaged sheetrock and imprints in the walls

VANCOUVER, Wash. — The grieving father of 5-year-old Hartley Anderson lunged at the man accused of murdering his daughter during an emotional court appearance Monday.

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom
Peter Anderson, father of Hartley Anderson

Ryan Burge, 37, of Vancouver was charged with killing the girl, the daughter of his girlfriend, after she suffered severe head trauma while in his care and later died.

During a brief but intense hearing Monday, with many of Hartley’s family members and friends in the courtroom, the prosecutor described the scene inside the apartment where the girl died, including damaged sheetrock and imprints in the walls. “Very violent” was how the prosecutor described the attack.

The man, 37-year-old Ryan Burge, was the boyfriend of the girl’s mother, according to Vancouver police.

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom
Ryan Burge

The girl’s mother, Natasha Luchau, called 911 and reported that Hartley “reportedly threw herself into a wall and was unresponsive,” and she “was bleeding badly and had shallow breathing,” according to a probable cause affidavit.

A neurosurgeon at the children’s hospital told a detective that the girl suffered a stroke and massive brain swelling. The doctor said the injuries to her head “could not be self-inflicted,” the affidavit says.

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom

Officers determined that Burge, who’d been dating Luchau for about three months, had been baby-sitting Hartley all day. Luchau was at work, and her sons were at school, according to the affidavit.

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom

The girl was identified by family as Hartley Anderson.

The family said Hartley celebrated her fifth birthday two weeks ago.

Her aunt, Whitney Luchau, described the young girl as a ball of energy who loved to be around her grandparents and cousins. Hartley also loved to play with her grandpa’s dogs, she said.

Burge showed no warning signs that he’d be capable of harming Hartley, the family said. Her mother never would have left the girl alone with Burge if that was the case, they said. Burge did not have a job and was being supported by Natasha Luchau, Hartley’s grandfather Tim Luchau said.

Eleven years ago, Burge was arrested and sentenced to six years in jail for setting a duplex on fire in Longview to collect insurance money.

There were wails and shouts of anger in the courtroom and Hartley’s father rushed toward Burge before he was stopped by deputies.

“It’s indescribable,” said TJ Luchau, Hartley’s uncle. “You go through anger, rage, confusion. You just don’t know what to think, just why somebody could do such a thing. We want answers and justice. It’s absolutely disgusting he did such a thing to my niece and took her from all of us.”

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom

Hartley’s grandfather, Tim Luchau, said, “I hope the system works. I hope the system works.

“I’ll never get to see her graduate from high school, be married or anything. He took that from us. He took the joy we had with her away. It will never be right without her. She was all our lives and that’s gone and that can never be brought back. I’ll never get to hear her ask me to push her on the swing. Just one more time, just one more time.”

The judge set bail at $5 million. Burge will be arraigned at his next court appearance Thursday at 9 a.m.

Father of murdered 5-year-old girl lunges at suspect in courtroom

A GoFundMe account has been set up for Hartley’s family.
https://www.gofundme.com/funeral-expense-justiceforhartley

Mary Greeley News
www.marygreeley.com

credit: https://www.kgw.com/article/news/crime/vancouver-man-arrested-for-murder-of-girlfriends-5-year-old-daughter/283-610965665
https://www.ktvb.com/article/news/crime/father-of-murdered-5-year-old-girl-lunges-at-suspect-in-courtroom/277-611625845

Vancouver man faces murder allegation in death of 5-year-old girl