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KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) - Jurors on Friday heard a school counselor tell of an oddencounter with Marsha Springer, mother of 16-year-old CalistaSpringer who died chained to her bed in 2008 when the family homeburned in Centreville.
Diana Kamphues said when Calista was in sixth grade, the girlindicated a desire to kill herself. And when Kamphues called MarshaSpringer and told her about the suicide wish "she [Marsha] startedtalking about Calista's grades and how they could be improved."
Marsha and Anthony Springer are charged with felony murder,child abuse and torture.
Classmates and school employees told jurors Friday that Calistawore the same clothing all week long, appeared with dirty hair andwould brush her teeth in the school restroom while her two sistersappeared clean and well dressed.
School para-pro Marilyn Lafler said, "Her [Calista's] hairwasn't brushed. She had, like, holes in her shoes. Her clothesweren't clean."
But Lafler said Calista's sister's "hair (had been) brushed,they were clean. You put them side by side I thought they were fromdifferent families."
Lafler and a string of Calista's classmates testified Calistatold them she was being chained to her bed. She said Calista "toldme that she was chained to the bed...every night and it's wrappedaround her legs, and I asked what kind of a chain it was and shesaid it was like a dog chain. She said it was wrapped around andtight to where she couldn't move."
Prosecutors are trying to argue the Springers took theirdaughter out of school after that to keep her away from otherpeople.
Lafler said she told a school counselor about Calista'srevelation and was told state child protection workers were alreadyaware of it.
Other testimony and the police investigation discovered St.Joseph County child protection workers did nothing about it. Oneworker said she thought someone else had approved of the chainingand her supervisor testified she missed the information when shereviewed the worker's report.
The trial in Kalamazoo continues Feb. 2. It was moved from St.Joseph County when the court was unable to seat an impartial jury.The fire scene where Calista died is across the street from thecounty courthouse.
A charity lodge where three people were killed back in September 2013 will likely never open again.
Kalamazoo Township Police are asking for your help in finding a 63-year-old man who told people back in November he was going off to die.
A camera mounted on a tow truck caught an example of a common incident Tuesday: a vehicle sliding off the road.