More details released in Holmen child neglect resulting in death

A three-year-old Holmen child’s October death was ruled a homicide by a medical examiner and the couple taking care of her is now facing related charges.

Jaymie Rundle, 24, and her boyfriend, 30-year-old Dylan Bartsh are charged with child abuse and child neglect resulting in death.

According to the criminal complaint, Bartsh’s three-year-old daughter died from fatal child abuse at the end of October 2014 due to a number of contributing factors, including cuts and bruising to her face, neck, abdomen, arms, back and legs. The medical examiner said the battered child clearly had not received adequate nutrition and had extreme “failure to thrive” conditions.

The complaint also stated that the toddler’s sodium level was extremely abnormal, which the doctor thought was due to an ingestion of exogenous sodium salt (likely table salt in this case) and that contributed significantly to her illness and death. The medical examiner could not rule out that the toddler was forced to eat table salt. The autopsy listed the cause of death as homicide.

The La Crosse County Sheriff’s Office said Bartsh lived with his girlfriend Jaymie Rundle and her four young children. Holmen police were called to a residence on October 28 to help first responders for a three-year-old having a seizure. The complaint states the toddler’s last visit to the doctor was when she was 26 months old for an ear infection. Bartsh was told to bring her back to get immunizations and establish care, but that did not happen.

Bartsh told authorities the toddler stopped eating two weeks before the seizure and when he changed her diaper he noticed how thin she was. Rundle and Bartsh said the three-year-old would refuse to eat and would sometimes make herself throw up. The toddler had regressed in potty training and was back to wearing a diaper. Bartsh described her as going downhill and “you could call us negligent.” Bartsh and Rundle also explained some of the injuries as accidents or results of an ear infection.

One of Rundle’s older children told police Bartsh and Rundle spanked her under her pants and diaper and slapped her a lot. The child said the toddler “had marks on her yesterday, marks on her today, and will have marks on her tomorrow.”

One of Bartsh’s children told police the toddler would get spanked by a fly swatter and when she last visited, she saw Rundle slap the child on the mouth.

Bartsh’s mother told police she was concerned about the way Bartsh and Rundle were disciplining the child. The last time she saw the three-year-old, she had dark circles under her eyes and bruising on her neck. When questioned why she did not step in, she said Bartsch would yell at her and say Rundle was taking care of it.

On Wednesday afternoon, a La Crosse County judge set a $2,500 cash bond for Rundle. Her next scheduled court appearance is Wednesday, February 25.

Bartsh was held in the Winona County Jail and awaited extradition to Wisconsin. He appeared in La Crosse County Court Thursday afternoon. A judge set a $2,500 cash bond for Bartsh. His preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 4.

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