Ripley County teen sentenced to 100 years for killing two siblings at 13

County jail deaths down, still twice state avg.
Posted at 9:55 PM, Feb 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-01 21:55:46-05

RIPLEY COUNTY — A teen was sentenced to 100 years in prison Tuesday after he was convicted of killing his siblings at age 13 in Ripley County.

Nickalas Kedrowtiz was just 13-years-old when detectives say he told them he put a towel over 23-month-old Desiree McCartney's head and a blanket over 11-month-old Nathaniel Ritz's head a few months later to "set them free" from "hell," according to court documents.

On Tuesday, Ripley County Prosecutor Ric Hertel said the sentence from the judge was the one he recommended.

In August, a jury deliberated for more than six hours before delivering the guilty verdict.

WCPO previously reported court documents said authorities responded to a home in Osgood for reports of a 23-month-old not breathing on May 1, 2017. First responders took the child to Margaret Mary Community Hospital; the child was later transported to Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. She died on May 6, 2017, according to Ripley County Prosecutor Richard Hertel.

Less than three months later, authorities responded to the same home for an 11-month-old child who was not breathing, WCPO reported. First responders took the child to Margaret Mary Community Hospital, where the child later died. A doctor told authorities the child died of asystole, a form of cardiac arrest, court documents state.

The deaths of Ritz and McCartney were both eventually ruled by coroners to be caused by asphyxiation and the manners were ruled homicides.

In August 2019, a year after he was arrested and charged with two counts of murder, the case was moved from juvenile court to the Ripley County Circuit so he could be tried as an adult.

In the court order, Ripley County Circuit Court Judge Ryan King said a doctor diagnosed Kedrowitz with Antisocial Personality Disorder. The doctor said Kedrowitz could "step over your dead body" without a care and is a lifelong danger.

The order also alleges he mutilated animals for entertainment and told his aunt, who has diabetes and a prosthetic leg, "maybe she just needs to die" because of her health conditions.

King and a probation officer both said the juvenile system wouldn't be able to address and continue to address Nickalas' needs, especially before he turned 21.

"The juvenile justice system is extremely limited in duration," King wrote. "Nickalas would only be in the juvenile justice system for approximately five years. This is insufficient given that Nickalas needs long-term care and supervision. Leaving Nickalas in the juvenile justice system does not guarantee long-term care and supervision. In fact, it permits, if not guarantees, the opposite of that. Anything that may or may not happen after Nickalas reaches the age of 21 is totally speculative and would, by definition, not be part of the juvenile justice system."

Previous reporting from Scripps station WCPO was included in this report.