After a 5-year old boy was reportedly shot dead by his mentally ill mother on March 5, the child's father announced he had informed authorities of the risk posed by the mother's illness before the killing.
Kenny Kreuscher Jr. was visiting his family in Montana when Sarah Atkinson, his mother, allegedly shot him in his sleep. She then shot herself, reports Daily Mail. She also died.
Ken Kreuscher, the boy's father, says that Denver Child Protective Services did not heed his warnings and is to blame for his son’s death.
Kreuscher claims that after he and Kenny’s mother divorced, his ex-wife became paranoid about bombs and hidden cameras after she stopped taking her medication. Atkinson also reportedly became violent toward her son.
In a video recorded by Kreuscher, Kenny describes a bruise allegedly caused by his mother.
“She punched me like that,” Kenny says in the video.
“Who punched you?” Kreuscher asks.
“Mommy,” answers Kenny.
Kreuscher claims he tried to get a retraining order after Atkinson threatened to kill their son.
“She had threatened to do it before. She said ‘I’m going to kill myself. I’m going to take him with me.’” Kreuscher told KUSA.
Kreuscher that Denver Human Services was aware of Atkinson’s threats against their son since 2012.
The DHS offered its condolences to Kreuscher and noted the resources it offers to families in a statement:
“The loss of a child is an absolute tragedy for this family, their loved ones and friends, and for our community and agency. We are working to understand the circumstances surrounding this horrible act. However I do want to take this time to say that any parent out there who may be experiencing feelings of harming themselves or their child -- our community is here to help you,” said Julie Smith, a DHS spokesperson.
Kreuscher says he hoped to prevent future warnings of mental illness from going unheeded.
“I’m here because I don’t want this to happen to anyone else. It’s not right what they did,” said Kreuscher.