Relatives Testify to Bruising in Toddler Murder Trial

By Trish Mehaffey, Reporter

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa – Two aunts of 2-year-old Skylar Inman testified Monday they started seeing bruising on Skylar after she moved to Coggon with her mother's boyfriend Lee Muldoon.

Muldoon, charged with first-degree murder, is accused of killing Skylar July 11, 2008. Skylar died from blunt force injuries to her abdomen.

Muldoon wasn't Skylar's father but she and her mother Brianna Volesky lived with Muldoon in Coggon.

The prosecution continues its case 9 a.m. Tuesday in Linn County District Court. The trial is expected to last more than three weeks.

Alicia Huenefeld, 18, Skylar's aunt and step-sister of Volesky, said Skylar's personality changed when they moved to Coggon. She wasn't the same happy and perky toddler.

During an event in Malcolm June 2008, Skylar didn't want to be with Muldoon, Alicia Huenefeld said.

"She seemed scared of him," Alicia Huenefeld said.

That same day Alicia Huenefeld notice a bruise on Skylar's pelvic when she took her to the bathroom. It was about 2 inches long.

Another time, Skylar came back from visiting her father Bobby Inman in Illinois but Skylar "threw a fit" when they met the Inmans halfway at a truck stop to take her home, she said.

"She didn't want to get in her car seat and threw a fit, kicking, screaming and crying," Alicia Huenefeld said.

Tyler Johnston, Muldoon's public defender, on cross asked her didn't she tell the police that she couldn't believe Muldoon was arrested because he was so sweet and showed her a lot of love?

"That's true," Alicia Huenefeld said.

Ashley Huenefeld, 21, Volesky's other step-sister, said she used to be best friends with Volesky but hasn't had a relationship with her since Skylar died. Volesky did OK with Skylar but she wasn't a great mother, she said.

"Did you ever see Brianna hit Skylar," Maybanks said.

"No. The most she did was put her in timeout," Ashley Huenefeld said.

She also said she never saw Muldoon hit her.

Ashley Huenefeld said she didn't see any bruises on Skylar until they moved to Coggon and Skylar's personality changed.

"She was always a happy girl," she said.

Skylar didn't want to play and seemed mad or upset.

Ashley Huenefeld did admit Muldoon was "good" with Skylar and he made Volesky happy.

Maybanks asked her how did Muldoon act at Skylar's funeral.

She said she thought Muldoon's actions were odd.

"He was was upset and crying really loud. Everybody could hear him. I thought it was a little much."

Ashley Huenefeld said Volesky was upset as well. She had to be kind of held up by Muldoon at the graveside service.

Hope Huenefeld, the ex-wife of Volesky's step-father, testified Skylar had a bruise on her cheek and forehead June 14, 2008. She confronted Skylar's grandmother about it but never reported it to police until after she found out the autopsy report on Skylar and after Muldoon was arrested.

Hope Huenefeld said at the time she didn't think about murder. She said she wished she had reported it to police.

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