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Archive for Sunday, January 19, 2003

Bond reduced in child abuse death

January 19, 2003

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— Bond for a couple accused of killing their 9-year-old adopted son has been reduced from $2 million to $200,000, despite objections from prosecutors.

At the bond hearing Friday for Christy Edgar, 46, and her husband, Neil Edgar Sr., 47, Dist. Atty. Paul Morrison revealed details about the case against the couple and about the Kansas City, Kan., church where they are pastors.

Morrison said members of God's Creation Outreach Ministry called Christy Edgar "mother" and "the prophet," and that she gave the orders to other church members to carry out discipline of the Edgars' three adopted children.

The Edgars are charged in Johnson County with first-degree felony murder in the Dec. 29 death of Brian Edgar, who authorities say suffocated after he had been bound and gagged at bedtime the night before. The Edgars also face charges of abusing their two other adopted children.

A third suspect charged in the boy's death, Chasity Boyd, 19, did not appear at Friday's hearing. She was a baby sitter for the Edgars, and her bond remained at $2 million.

Christy Edgar, Boyd and five other church members also face child abuse charges in neighboring Wyandotte County.

Morrison told Johnson County District Judge John Bennett on Friday that the Edgars had led other people in a systemic pattern of child abuse and had attempted to destroy evidence after Brian's death.

"That bond is too low for a child abuse murder case," Morrison said.

If they post bond, the Edgars will be under house arrest at their Overland Park home. Bennett said he did not think the couple would pose a public safety risk with no children in the home.

Morrison told the judge that the night Brian died, he was "so bound up" he couldn't breathe.

Members of God's Creation Outreach Ministry have gone underground to avoid talking to investigators, he said, and the church's finances were under investigation. He said a lot of money had gone into the church, but very little appeared to go out into the community.

"We're still trying to sort out whether the church is a complete scam or a partial scam," Morrison said.

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