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Aunt of homicide victim speaks out about toddler's death

Jocelyn was found unresponsive on January 27. The coroner said she was strangled and smothered to death.

Posted: Apr 22, 2018 7:31 PM
Updated: Apr 23, 2018 8:57 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT)- A woman facing neglect charges following the murder of her 2-year-old in January will face an Allen County judge Wednesday morning.

Crystal Belcher was arrested Thursday after her daughter, 2-year-old Jocelyn Belcher's death was ruled a homicide.

Jocelyn was found unresponsive on January 27. The coroner said she was strangled and smothered to death.

Her aunt, Kim Gibbs, said her death was preventable, and Jocelyn was the sweetest little girl you could ask for.

"She was beautiful. Biggest blue eyes you've ever seen in your life," Gibbs said.

Neighbors even left a note on the front step of 235 Butler Street. It says, "In loving memory of Jojo. We miss you."

Gibbs said when Crystal Belcher found Jocelyn blue and stiff, she changed her clothes and diaper before calling 911.

"I hope she gets charged with accessory to murder, if not murder. She tampered with evidence. She lied. Her stories have been changed multiple times," she said.

Gibbs said CPS was called several times before Jocelyn died. She believes Belcher's boyfriend, Shane Patton, abused some of the other four kids in the house, too, and Belcher didn't stop it.

"She has been warned by multiple people, by Shane's mothers of his children, victims of his. She knew, and she chose to overlook it," she said.

Now if she could say anything to Belcher and Patton, it would be: "You guys are going to get what's coming, and you guys deserve every bit of it."

Police are still searching for Shane Patton as a person of interest. Anyone who knows where he might be is asked to contact police at 260-427-1222.

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