116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Linda Christie said her granddaughter Evelyn, 'such a precious soul,' was smiling in heaven Monday because 'she got justice after 10 years and I'm so thrilled.'
Christie in a victim's impact statement said she didn't want to talk about 5-year-old Evelyn Celeste Miller in death but wanted to show her much too short life as a smiling, happy little girl, playing with her stepbrother, wearing a paper crown and splashing in a swimming pool.
'Somewhere over the rainbow, bluebirds fly. Birds fly, over the rainbow, oh why oh why can't I,' played during a four minute video, as family members broke down crying and sheriff's deputies, investigators and many others in the courtroom teared up.
Casey Frederiksen, 35, convicted of sexually assaulting and stabbing the child to death, did not. He showed no emotion during Christie's comments and the heart-wrenching video.
He also declined to speak before the judge gave his sentence but his attorney Aaron Hawbaker told the court that he advised his client not to give a statement pending appeal.
Second Judicial District Judge Gregg Rosenblatt sentenced Frederiksen to two life sentences for first-degree murder and first-degree sexual abuse in Floyd County District Court. He said it made little practical difference if he ran the life sentences consecutively or concurrently but they were separate 'violent' offenses and he would run them consecutively.
Frederiksen was also ordered to pay over $29,000 to the crime victim's compensation program and $150,000 in restitution to Evelyn's estate.
Those sentences will be served consecutively to the 14 years Frederiksen is already serving on federal child pornography charges in Illinois.
Rosenblatt said he couldn't say much more in regards to the crime that hadn't already been shown through evidence, testimony and a victim's impact statement. Both offenses were 'heinous' crimes, he said. Evelyn was 5-years-old at the time Frederiksen sexually assaulted her, which resulted in injuries, and then Frederiksen killed her to cover up the sexual assault, Rosenblatt said. Her body was then placed in the Cedar River and it took many investigators to solve her murder after 10 years.
Rosenblatt denied the defense's motions for a new trial and a stay or postponement of judgment due to error.
Aaron Hawbaker, Frederiksen's attorney, didn't make an argument during the hearing but in his filed motion said the court shouldn't have allowed evidence of previous child pornography charges to come into the trial and also claimed one of the witness' statements shouldn't have been considered.
Assistant Iowa Attorney General Scott Brown said after the hearing that 'justice was served.' It was such a 'long road' for the family and the investigators, many of whom had retired over the 10-year investigation, but it was a 'team effort' by many. He said he couldn't say much more or something better than what Christie had said in her impact statement. According to trial testimony, prosecutors believed Frederiksen could be linked to the girl's death based on her injuries and statements he made to investigators and relatives about an attraction to the child.
However, the defense claimed another suspect was responsible for the girl's death and said there was no physical evidence connecting Frederiksen to the girl or her death. Frederiksen also has a federal hearing Tuesday in Cedar Rapids on his drug charges. According to court documents, he will not be able to attend the hearing with his attorney because it was unknown if he would remain in Floyd County or if he was going back into federal custody.
U.S. District Chief Judge Linda Reade denied a delay on his motion for a reduction in his 10-year prison drug sentence based on changes in the sentencing guidelines.