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Owen County man sentenced to 60 years for kidnapping, murder of toddler Shaylyn Ammerman

Mugshot of Kyle Parker

OWEN COUNTY, Ind. – The man who killed 14-month-old Shaylyn Ammerman was sentenced to 60 years in prison with no term suspended on Monday.

The sentencing was the result of a plea agreement from Kyle Parker, who pleaded guilty to murder and kidnapping in the 14-month-old girl’s death. In exchange for the guilty plea, child molestation and several other charges were dropped.

During the sentencing hearing, Shaylyn’s father Justin Ammerman said that even though he wanted Parker to be convicted on all charges and serve more time, he accepted the plea agreement and sentence.

After testimony and closing arguments, Judge Lori Thatcher Quillen told Parker that his actions were “pure evil” and “gut wrenching.”

“You, Mr. Parker, have no moral compass,” said Thatcher Quillen, who lamented that convictions on all charges, the death penalty, and life without parole were off the table.

After Quillen read him the 60-year sentence she said, “Sheriff, you can now get him out of my courtroom.”

Shaylyn Ammerman

Shaylyn Ammerman

Parker will have to register as a serious violent offender but not a sex offender.

Shaylyn disappeared in March 2016. Parker had been over at her father’s home in Spencer for a night of drinking. He took her from her bed and drove to rural Owen County, where he assaulted and killed her.

He tried blaming other people for the murder but finally confessed to his stepfather, who informed police. Information from Parker helped investigators find the girl’s body next to a tree near Gosport on March 23, 2016.

Prosecutors said Parker smothered the girl and strangled her before dumping her body. A medical examiner called the trauma to her body the “worst case of sexual trauma” she had seen in her career.

Family members said they wished Parker’s punishment would be more severe. However, they also said his guilty plea will allow the family to avoid a long, painful trial.