This is dedicated to Travis Holappa who was kidnapped, tortured and murdered on July 25, 2004 in Northern Minnesota. This was all due to meth. I am Travis' mother and I wish to make this devastation turn into a better thing by educating and exposing the truth about meth, the dangers, and the deadly consequences it brings about to individuals and communities.

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Location: Colorado, United States

I want to do what I can to educate people about what is going on around the world with the meth problem. I want people to know about it BEFORE they even get the idea to want to try it. It is a dangerous drug and will ruin your life as well as all those who love you. I am on a mission on behalf of my only son, Travis.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Baby's death adds to meth term

By Peter Shinkle

The sentence of James G. Hayes for making methamphetamine at his home in Fenton was extended to 27 years Tuesday by a federal judge who heard prosecutors link the illicit lab to the death of Hayes' four-week-old daughter.

Hayes, 28, pleaded guilty in December of carrying out a conspiracy to make more than 500 grams of meth. He faced a sentence of up to 16 years, but prosecutors asked for life in prison on grounds that Hayes had endangered his four children, including the one who died.

The sentencing comes amid increasing concern over the harm to children from meth manufacturing and use. Officials say the drug causes devastating addiction, and its production releases toxic chemicals. Missouri officials have said that 12 percent of children in the state foster care system at the end of last year were there for a meth-related reason.

Detective Damon Kunneman of the St. Louis County police, who investigated Hayes' drug ring, voiced concern Tuesday about the impact on children. "It's going on in a lot of homes. The problem is getting the evidence," he said.

The 4-week-old girl, Jersie N. Hayes, was in a mobile home occupied by Hayes and her mother, Kristy Toczylowski, when she was reported unresponsive on Jan. 21, 2003.

Toczylowski, Hayes' girlfriend and the mother of four of his children, told authorities she found the baby dead at 6 a.m. in a bed at their residence on Treeview Lane in Fenton, prosecutors said.

Hayes later acknowledged making meth there in the days before the infant's death. Laboratory tests found traces of meth on a pillowcase from the bed where the child was found, U.S. Attorney Catherine Hanaway said Tuesday.

A government expert found that Jersie's condition was consistent with dying by exposure to hydrochloric acid, a hazardous chemical released during meth production, Assistant U.S. Attorney Sirena Wissler said.

But defense attorney Douglas Forsyth pointed out in court that an autopsy found no signs of meth in the infant's blood, and was unable to determine the cause of death.

In Tuesday's sentencing hearing, Forsyth urged U.S. District Judge Charles Shaw to consider that another member of the drug ring received probation, even though he helped transport tanks of chemicals to Hayes' home.

Shaw noted that Hayes was proved to have risked the lives of his children.

"You're going to be out of commission," the judge said, and then he handed down the 27-year sentence.

Hayes snarled a slur at the prosecutor as he turned to leave court.

Forsyth said he could not comment on whether Hayes will appeal, saying that decision would be up to Hayes.

Toczylowski has not been charged with a crime. "At this point in time, we have no evidence to suggest she either knew or participated in the manufacturing that was going on in the residence," Wissler said.

The three surviving children are in state custody, Wissler said.

Seven other men indicted with Hayes also pleaded guilty. One man, who cooperated with investigators, received probation. The others received prison sentences ranging from one to 10 years. 314-621-5804


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i lived two homes away from james hayes and i baby sat this child and no one ever ask me a question one. the only reason james said that he had cooked meth their was he had no choice but to say it. they promised him less time if he did so. they lied . he might be guilty for cooking meth but never at his home. if this was true dont u think someone or anyone would have question at least one nieghbor. james tried to have me seved to testify but they wouldnt because they wouldnt of had a case against any one that was indited on this stick. he was wrong for cooking meth but he had nothing to do with his baby dieing.

Monday, October 06, 2008 2:26:00 PM  

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