Child abuse case set for jury trial next week

February 22, 2024

Child abuse case set for jury trial next week

By Rob Alway and Allison Scarbrough, Media Group 31

LUDINGTON — The criminal case against a mother and her boyfriend charged with child abuse is scheduled for a five-day jury trial next week.

Kevin James Kaiser, 30, of Ludington, is charged with first-degree child abuse, which is punishable by up to life in prison. Tara Lynn Treesh, 35, of Ludington is charged with second-degree child abuse, which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. 

Mason County Prosecuting Attorney Lauren Kreinbrink said the alleged incident took place Dec. 14, 2021 in the City of Ludington. She said Treesh brought her 2-year-old son to Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital Emergency Department for treatment of injuries. The boy was then transferred to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids because of the severity of injuries, Kreinbrink said. 

“I became involved because the extent of injuries of the child indicated that it was possible that he was not going to survive,” Kreinbrink said. “Thankfully, because of the medical treatment he received, he has survived. He is currently in the care of his maternal grandparents.” 

Kreinbrink said Kaiser was in a relationship with Treesh and living with her at the time of the incident but is not the father of the child. Both Kaiser and Treesh were arrested by Ludington Police Department, which investigated the incident that took place in the 600 block of East Dowland Street. 

“The charges were delayed for almost a year due to a very comprehensive investigation,” Kreinbrink said. “Initially we were unsure if the child was going to survive, which would have meant homicide charges. In addition, the original detective on the case left LPD. Det. Angela Babinec picked up the case and was able to finalize it. She has been instrumental in making sure this was brought to the courts.” 

Kaiser also faces charges of maintaining a drug house and fourth-offense habitual offender in connection to incident. He also faces charges of assault with intent to do great bodily harm for a separate, unrelated incident that allegedly took place Sept. 12, 2021. He has a long history of criminal activity, including aggravated stalking, resisting/obstructing/assaulting police, accessory to a felony and home invasion.

Treesh also faces charges of possession of ecstasy and maintaining a drug house. She also has a criminal history which includes breaking and entering and methamphetamine possession. 

Both Kaiser and Treesh are currently lodged in the Mason County Jail, according to court records. Bail for his initial assault charges was $50,000, and bail for the child abuse charges was $100,000. Treesh’s bail is set at $10,000. 

The trial is set to begin Monday, Feb. 26, at 9 a.m. Kaiser is represented by defense attorney Tracie Dinehart, and Treesh is represented by defense attorney Andrew Lapres, according to court files.

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