North Newton couple sentenced in ‘horrific’ case of abuse involving adopted children


A North Newton couple learned their fate today, after they pled guilty last year to abusing their three adopted children from Peru.

Harvey County Chief Judge Joe Dickinson sentenced Jim and Paige Nachtigal to 32 months each in the Harvey County Jail.

The sentencing hearing Thursday was emotional at times.

North Newton Police Chief Randy Jordan wiped back tears a few times as he described what he saw when he was called to the Nachtigal’s home in February of 2016.

He went into detail of the injuries he noticed on one of the children, an 11-year-old boy.

“They did find there was a healing broken bone in his arm, and when he said he got hit it hurt, he got hit hard,” said Chief Jordan.

Dr. Kerri Weeks with KU School of Medicine in Wichita has seen thousands of abuse and neglect cases in her career.

She performed an evaluation on the 11-year-old boy and an 11-year-old girl.

“I noticed her limping on her right leg when she came in to the clinic, she had very thin limbs, a very wasted appearance,” said Dr. Weeks.

Dr. Weeks touched on the severity of the abuse she saw when she met with the Nachtigal’s two adopted children.

“This case, in my opinion, in my training and expertise was extremely severe,” said Dr. Weeks.

The oldest of the three adopted children, who was 15 at the time the children were taken from the home, read a prepared statement at the podium.

She went into great detail about the physical abuse she witnessed her two adopted siblings have to endure.

She spoke of the physical abuse and that her siblings would be beat with a cane and a wooden spoon.

The oldest sibling, now 17-years-old, says her adopted siblings would sometimes be deprived food and even a real bed to sleep in.

In total, ten people were called to the stand.

Terri Mather, a friend of the Nachtigal’s, spoke out in their defense.

“Never did I witness a child being harmed or see anything suspicious and they ate their meals, I saw it with my own eyes,” said Mather.

Both Jim and Paige Nachtigal spoke as the sentencing hearing came to a close.

They both expressed remorse for the abuse they were accused of administering on their three adopted children.

“When I set out to adopt I had no idea of the difficulties and behaviors I would be preparing,” said Jim Nachtigal.  “I had no idea of the difficulties and behaviors I would have to deal with,” added Paige Nachtigal.

Harvey County Attorney David Yoder represented the state in this case.

He spoke after the sentencing hearing, calling this the worst case of child abuse that he had seen in his career.

“These cases are the most wearing and difficult I think for any prosecutor, extremely wearing on me and on the community,” said Yoder.

After reading the sentence he was giving, Judge Dickinson did grant the Nachtigal’s a stay.

This means they don’t have to report to the Harvey County Jail until March 15th, by 5 p.m.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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