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    Harvey Guilty of First Degree Murder of 3-year-old Elijah

      A Jefferson County jury found Lysander Benjamin Harvey, 22, guilty in the death of three-year-old Elijah Carpenter. Elijah was the son of Kristina Carpenter, Harvey’s girlfriend. Harvey was found guilty of First Degree Murder of a Child under 12 by a person in Position of Trust (F1).

    On April 12, 2011 police were called to St. Anthony’s Central on a report of a non-responsive three-year-old boy. Kristina Carpenter was an employee of St. Anthony’s and had brought the baby in because they couldn’t wake him up.

    When they arrived at the hospital Elijah had no heartbeat. Doctors were able to resuscitate him but he never had brain activity. Doctors found bilateral subdural hematoma - serious bleeding in Elijah’s brain, healing injury to his spleen, multiple visible bruises, healing rib fractures, and blistering burn marks on his buttocks.

    Harvey, Carpenter, Elijah and a Carpenter’s five-year daughter were living at the Mesa Motor Inn in Lakewood in April, 2011.

    When contacted by police after Elijah was taken to the hospital Harvey originally told police that the little boy fell down the stairs. He said that he “boxed” with the 34-pound child, to “toughen him up.” He also admitted “whooping” the child for potty training accidents. This included whipping him with a belt, with his pants both on and off.

    On the evening that Elijah died, his five-year-old sister was standing in the corner holding a phone book, as punishment, for much of the evening. She testified in court that Harvey would hold Elijah and beat him with a belt. She also described the “boxing” and said that Lysander punched Elijah in the chest over and over. When asked what Elijah was doing she said, “He was crying.”

    On the evening the child died, Harvey told Carpenter that he was going to give Elijah a “whooping” for a toileting accident. Carpenter didn’t want to watch so she went outside the motel door. She stood there, occasionally texting Harvey to stop because she was afraid authorities would take away her children. She didn’t go back inside the motel room to protect the little boy.

    There was testimony that later in the evening, when Elijah was “sleeping” and they couldn’t get him to wake up, Harvey put Elijah in the shower and alternately turned on the hot then cold water.

    Following a week of testimony, the jury was out just over a day before returning their verdict.

    In February, 2012 Kristine Carpenter was sentenced to 19 years in prison for her role in Elijah’s death. A jury had found her guilty of child abuse resulting in death. Immediately following the return of the verdict, Harvey was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

    Pam Russell
    DA Public Information

    May 10, 2012

    Last Updated: 7-1-2013
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    A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. See Colo. RPC 3.6.