A man faces life in prison without parole after pleading guilty Monday to the murder, rape and sexual abuse of a 2-year-old girl in his care.
Brian Crabtree, 21, pleaded guilty to all charges in the 2008 death of Katelynn Stinnett.
On Nov. 25, 2008, Crabtree was caring for Katelynn and her brother at the Bradford Apartments off Versailles Road in Lexington. Crabtree watched the children while their father, Daniel Stinnett, was at work. At the time, Stinnett was estranged from the children's mother, Angela Johns.
During a preliminary hearing in 2008, a Lexington police sergeant testified that Crabtree gave Katelynn a bath, then dropped her from a height about level with his shoulders. She struck her head on the floor. Then Crabtree raped her, the sergeant testified.
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In addition to life without parole on the murder, the prosecution recommended 20 years each on the rape and sodomy, and five years each on two counts of sexual abuse, Commonwealth's Attorney Ray Larson said.
The prosecution did not seek the death penalty because of Crabtree's low IQ, Larson said.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2002 that executing the mentally handicapped is unconstitutional. Many states, including Kentucky, have said anyone with an IQ of less than 70 qualifies as mentally handicapped.
"This guy had a series of IQ tests as he was growing up that put his IQ at 70 or less," Larson said.
Had the prosecution pursued execution and had a jury decided to sentence Crabtree to death, "this would be litigated for the next 20 or 25 years," Larson said. "We have people who have been on Death Row for 29 years."
Fayette Circuit Judge Thomas Clark scheduled sentencing for Nov. 4.
In a 2008 interview with the Herald-Leader, Johns said she and Stinnett had agreed to donate Katelynn's organs. "Her heart deserved to live in another kid," Johns said.
In that same interview, Johns said of her daughter, "Katelynn never had a frown on her face. She was an angel."