Whether it was Christmastime or not, Heather Tipton said she often sang Silent Night to help calm the fears of her son Logan.
“My son was terrified of the dark,” she said, but at the sound of the song, “he’d go right to sleep.”
On Monday night, less than 24 hours after police say 6-year-old Logan Tipton was stabbed to death in his Versailles bedroom by an intruder, his mother led hundreds of mourners in singing Silent Night for him one last time.
The crowd gathered on the Woodford County High School football field, where Logan’s football number, 63, was emblazoned on the scoreboard. They gathered around the Tipton family to cry, pray, offer condolences and sing songs, including Logan’s favorite, Jesus Loves Me.
The Indiana man who confessed to the stabbing is most likely mentally ill, his attorney said after a court hearing Monday.
The boy was stabbed multiple times in the head with a large kitchen knife during a burglary about 4 a.m. Monday, according to investigators and Woodford County Coroner Ronald Owens.
Ronald Exantus, 32, was arrested at the Douglas Avenue house and charged with murder and first-degree burglary, police said. He confessed to killing the child, according to court records.
Friend Peter Barnhardt of Versailles said the Tipton family and the community of 9,000 are struggling after the boy’s violent death.
“We’re just trying to wrap our heads around this,” he said.
Logan, left, and the man who has confessed to murdering him, Ronald Exantus
Exantus’ bond was set at $1 million during a Woodford District Court hearing just hours after the killing.
Attorney Bridget Hofler from the Department of Public Advocacy appeared on Exantus’ behalf. She told the judge she didn’t think Exantus was mentally competent and said he might have schizophrenia.
She later told reporters outside the courtroom, “I feel certain he is mentally ill. I’m not a psychologist, but I’ve dealt with a lot of people in my career.”
“This is a very emotional issue for all of us in Woodford County,” said Hofler, who also is a resident. “I mean this is a child that is dead, and it’s very tragic.”
While the family slept, Exantus entered the home and walked around before taking a large knife he found in the house and going to the upstairs bedroom where Logan was, according to the court record.
There was no forced entry into the home, Versailles police Lt. Michael Fortney said. The front door of the house had been unlocked. Everyone in the family was home, except for the mother who was at work.
One of the daughters heard Logan’s scream, Fortney said. The father also woke up, and he fought Exantus before subduing him, Fortney said.
When police arrived, they found Logan and tried to give him aid.
A couple of the boy’s siblings had cuts and scratches from the attack, Fortney said. Those injuries did not require hospital treatment. They were treated at their house or at a relative’s house.
Police seized a vehicle with Indiana plates that was parked outside the house, Fortney said. Police think the vehicle belongs to Exantus.
Tiffany Crow, who owns Tiffany’s Pet Spa near the house where the attack occurred, said she and her 11-year-old son were shaken by the news. She said she didn’t know the boy’s family well but would see children playing outside.
“It’s just horrible,” Crow said. “Kiss your kids every day, every night.”
A family friend of the Tipton family, Laura Burton Lacy, set up a GoFundMe fundraising page for the family Monday morning.
Lacy said in an interview with the Herald-Leader that proceeds would go towards funeral expenses and potentially a new place to stay, adding that the other Tipton children are too afraid to go back into the home.Careful there, or else Kentucky Judge Olu Stevens might chastise the white Tipton family and their surviving children for having negative views of blacks, as he did a three-year old white girl who was the victim of a black home invasion. [Judge slams victims for tot's 'black men' fear, Louisville Courier-Journal, 4-10-15]
The evil infecting America seems demonic at times, with so many willingly sickened by a disease perpetually mandating they push for the imaginary rights of Ronald Exantus.
Years ago (early 1990s), my favorite part of the year would be Christmas because my mother and father went all out to ensconce my siblings and I in the spirit of the season. We each had a large (artificial) Christmas tree in our rooms, and at night I too would be afraid to close my eyes as Logan Tipton was.
One Christmas, I got a pretty impressive CD player and all through the year I couldn't wait to play a Christmas CD I had been given as well. When the tree went up, every night through Christmas I'd play the CD and wouldn't peacefully fall asleep until I too had heard Silent Night.
Those memories came pouring back to me as I read this story of Logan Tipton, a six-year-old white child who should be eagerly awaiting the arrival Santa Claus as I write, instead of having a vigil held in his honor at some football field in Kentucky.
Never forget that we live in a world where if the black Judge Olu Stevens were to hear this case, he'd probably chastise Logan's surviving siblings for fearing to go back into the home their brother was murdered in because they would also probably develop "black men" fear.