Tot boy found dead in crib & wrapped in blanket after parents ‘cruelly beat’ him; DCF under fire in city where dead children keep stacking up: Police

A 3-year-old Kansas toddler was found dead in his crib last Thursday and police say the boy was likely there for days before they discovered him.

According to a 911 call obtained by KWCH 12, police received a domestic disturbance call to the 4500 block of N. Hydraulic at around 11 p.m. last Thursday, after a neighbor reported hearing an argument coming from the home of Brandi Kai Marchant, 22, and Patrick Javonovich, 28. The caller told a 911 dispatcher that they heard people screaming and striking each other.

When police arrived, they questioned both Marchant and Javonovich when they found the pair outside of the home. Both claimed everything was fine and explained they had two children inside the home. According to Wichita police Capt. Brent Allred, the responding officers decided to check on the kids before leaving and asked the couple if they could enter the home.

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Once inside the residence, police found 3-year-old Zaiden Javonovich wrapped in a blanket, deceased. The boy suffered “obvious injuries,” according to police. The officers also found the boy’s 4-month-old baby brother in the home, in critical condition.

“If they (the officers) wouldn’t have went inside and communicated out there, more than likely they would have left, made a report and we wouldn’t have known about this for I don’t know how long,” Allred said during a press statement, according to The Wichita Eagle.

Authorities said that the 4-month-old boy is doing “much better” and expected to survived.

Charging documents filed on Tuesday state that police alleged the parents “unlawfully and knowingly torture(d) or cruelly beat” the children. Marchant and Javonovich were arrested and charged with first-degree murder, although the Zaiden’s official cause of death is still pending. Both remain behind bars of $200,000 each.

Allred added that the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) “has reports or has been involved” with the parents and the children in the home, but details surrounding the reports have not been released.

Kansas DCF has been under fire for numerous child deaths in Wichita that happened after multiple calls and complaints to the agency about the children, including:

Lucas Hernandez, 5, was found deceased under a bridge in 2018.

Evan Brewer, 3, was found sealed inside block concrete in his mother’s rented home in 2017.

Caleb Blansett, 10, was found stabbed to death in his mother’s home in 2014.

Anthony E. Bunn, 2, was found beaten to death in his parents’ home in 2018.

RELATED Reading: ‘Secrecy is killing children’: Kansas child welfare system refuses to unseal records on abused, deceased kids: Report

As CrimeOnline previously reported, demands for answers reached an all-time high in 2018 after information about the torture and abuse of Kansas City boy, Adrian Jones, who was fed to pigs, came to light. While the state boasts being named the as part country’s safest in the “Child & Family Services Review,” others claim the state is more worried about being praised than actually protecting children.

“In some ways it’s surreal,” Sen. Laura Kelly said. “We are sitting there talking about a 7-year-old or a 5-year-old who died a torturous death in the system and the system’s response to that is, ‘Look at all these blue ribbons we’ve won.’ Not, ‘What can we do to make sure it doesn’t happen again?’ 

DCF disagreed. The agency claimed that they in no way “stonewall or misled.” Social workers defended themselves by claiming they are overworked and have too many caseloads.

In early 2018, a lawmaker proposed to make all records public once a child died or was seriously injured, unless it was proven that opening records would cause significant harm to the child’s siblings. Immediately after, according to The Kansas City Star, DCF went into “defense mode,” and said releasing records would violate federal law.

The answers, however, could possibly be on the way. In June, the Kansas Legislature passed a bill signed by Gov. Sam Brownback that created a child welfare task force to dig into the issues concerning DCF. Sen. Julia Lynn hopes that the new bill is at least a start into the overwhelming problem concerning child abuse and neglect in Kansas.

“This is their collective job,” Lynn said. “The job is not being done. It is my hope and desire that the task force will provide clear purpose and direction with aggressive standards and outcomes to hold all agencies and providers accountable.”

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[Feature Photo: Zaiden Javonovich, Brandi Kai Marchant, Patrick Javonovich/Wichita PD]