ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – A judge has denied a former Abilene CPS supervisor’s request to have her charge connected to the fatal Tiffany Klapheke child abuse case dismissed.
Martha ‘Bit’ Whitaker will stand trial for Tampering With/Fabricating Physical evidence after a judge decided the amount of time she’s spent waiting for trial does not impact her ability to have a fair trial. This decision was made during court proceedings Tuesday afternoon.
Whitaker was charged two years after Tamryn Klapheke, 22 months, was found deceased at a home on Dyess Air Force Base in 2012. Two other kids that were neglected and malnourished were removed from the home.
Court documents say Whitaker “did intentionally and knowingly alter or conceal . . . Child Protective Services documents detailing the investigation of the Klapheke children and/or medical records of the Klapheke children and/or Dyess Family Advocacy office records of the Klapheke children, with intent to impair its availability as evidence in the investigation”.
Whitaker was indicted for her charge connected to the Klapheke case on July 17, 2014, and was not arrested until July 26, 2014.
Another CPS worker, Gretchen Denny, has also been charged with Tampering With/Fabricating Physical Evidence for the same reason as Whitaker. Denny has also not been to trial.
Whitaker and Denny are now both scheduled to have status hearings in May of 2017 so both sides of the case can review any evidence, arraignment dates, and other procedural issues.
Their trial date will likely be decided during those hearings.
Tiffany Klapheke was sentenced to 30 years in prison in February of 2014 on charges connected to the death of Tamryn and the abuse of her other two children.
Klapheke’s then-boyfriend, Senior Airman Perez, is scheduled for a re-trial at Dyess Air Force Base on an undetermined date. He was originally sentenced to three years of confinement for adultery and three counts of child endangerment.
BigCountryHomepage is following the developments with Whitaker, Denny, and Perez closely. Check back for the latest.