ALPENA — On the day Jayde McDonnell died, a police net slowly fell over the man suspected of the violence that killed her.
Documents obtained by The News in a Freedom of Information Act request detail the events of July 22, the day the 2-year-old was allegedly killed by her mother Adrienne Pavelka and her mother’s boyfriend Aaron Trout Alcona County was mistreated.
Police believe Trout had abused the child for some time – taped her to a toilet seat and forced her to sleep on the porch with her hands tied – before the violent incident they say resulted in the child’s death.
On July 19, police said, an enraged trout threw the girl, picked her up by the ankles, and threw her against a hallway wall.
Although the child was critically injured and mostly unresponsive, neither Trout nor Pavelka called medical help until July 22 when Trout drove Pavelka and the deceased girl to MyMichigan Medical Center Alpena, police said.
Trout and Pavelka are both charged with first-degree murder and child molestation.
Pavelka acted “out of fear for her life and the lives of the people she cared about,” said Matt Wojda, Pavelka’s attorney.
Bill Pfeifer, representing Trout, could not be reached for comment.
The following narrative, describing the police actions surrounding the death of Jayde McDonnell, was extracted from reports filed by law enforcement officers and medical personnel and submitted to The News by the Michigan State Police.
Sergeant Mark Bluck, an officer with the Alpena Police Department, was moments from the hospital when a dispatcher said a woman arrived at the emergency room with an unresponsive child just after 9am on July 22.
When Bluck arrived at the hospital, a doctor ran up to him and told him the child was dead.
The girl was lying on a stretcher in an accident room, covered with a sheet up to her neck. A nurse sat in front of the room, visibly shaken.
In another room, Bluck met up with Pavelka, who cried when she told him Trout killed the child.
According to Pavelka, Trout became violent when the toddler “went to poop in the toilet and didn’t tell us.”
Trout disconnected the home phone so she couldn’t call for help, held a gun to her head and ordered her not to tell anyone, Pavelka told Detective Anthony Utt of the MSP Alpena Post.
“I didn’t do anything because I was too scared,” Pavelka told Utt.
The next day, Pavelka went to work and pretended everything was fine while Trout was home alone with the child, she told hospital workers.
According to Pavelka, that day and the next, Trout gave her about 20 “little white pills” and said the pills would “help her forget.”
When Trout finally agreed to take Pavelka and the child to Alpena Hospital on the 22nd, he threatened to kill Pavelka’s mother and other children then living in the backcountry if Pavelka didn’t lie about the girl’s injuries, Pavelka agreed Bleed in the hospital.
Around the same time, police received word that a man matching Trout’s description was in the hospital. Officials confirmed the man was not Trout, but the hospital was sealed off as a precaution and workers took Pavelka to a room further inside the building.
In the trauma room, the county coroner said the child “went through hell,” Bluck said.
Meanwhile, police gave chase to the black 2014 Ford Taurus in which Trout had sped away and threatened further violence.
Just before 10:00 a.m., Trout’s vehicle received a “look out” alert in Iosco County, where a cellphone ping placed Trout. The driver was classified as armed and dangerous.
Police approached the location indicated by the ping from multiple directions and searched the area for the Taurus, to no avail.
When a new Ping Trout placed trout at his home on Camp Ten Trail southwest of Glennie, officers took up positions on the roads leading to the home. The numerous unmarked trails and back roads in the densely wooded area around Trout’s home provided escape routes if Trout knew the police were coming, so officers had to form a tight but hidden ring around their object.
With officers from at least nine police departments arriving, including the MSP Seventh District Fugitive Team and the US Forest Service Law Division, task force commanders at the Glennie Fire Department set up a staging area for officers who were not assigned a position around Trout’s home.
A rural postman in the area tipped police off that he had just seen Traut’s Taurus delivering mail.
At 1:03 p.m., a plainclothes officer from the Michigan State Police Seventh District Emergency Support Team pulled onto a road about half a mile from Trout’s home in an unmarked pickup truck and told his coworkers he wanted to drive by the home to see whether this was the case Taurus was there.
Five minutes later, a call to the police radio said the officer had Trout in custody.
When uniformed officers arrived, they heard screams behind the house. They ran into the backyard and saw the cop struggling with Trout, both on the ground.
Trout, who was pinned to the ground by the officer, threw his arms and legs and apparently tried to escape. The uniformed officers pulled Trout’s arms behind his back and handcuffed him.
Trout repeated “I didn’t do anything” and “I don’t even know what’s going on” during his arrest, telling police, “I did the right thing” and “I took her to the hospital right away,” police reported.
After the arrest, police took Trout to a nearby hospital, not in Alpena, where, at Trout’s request, medical staff examined his shoulder, spine and brain and found nothing to worry about, according to medical records accompanying the police reports.
Drug tests conducted at this visit showed the presence of cannabinoids but were negative for other drugs.
That same evening, an MSP Crime Scene Response Team arrived from Grayling and entered the home through a sliding glass door that led off a back porch into the living room.
To her left was a kitchen and a small entry room. To her right, a hallway led to two bedrooms, including the room where Trout allegedly packed the child.
Lab technicians tested multiple spots in the home for blood, including stains on multiple items in the home and multiple parts of the hallway wall, with negative results.
At a third location down the hallway, the response team’s test showed the possible presence of blood.
The response team collected swabs from “certain areas of interest,” all from the northwest wall of the hallway, for further study and collected the litter for further testing.
In a bathroom, they found a commode chair with a piece of duct tape and what appeared to be hair stuck to it. Large areas of mesh-printed adhesive residue were evident on the chair.
Outside, they found and collected a rope with what appeared to be hair braided in it. A search of a backyard fire pit found duct tape, which the team collected along with a stained blanket on the back porch.
Police also confiscated a plastic tub — Pavelka said the couple used it as part of the child’s toilet training — and weapons with ammunition, including several semi-automatic rifles and pistols.
After approximately three hours of investigation, including photographing and sketching the crime scene, the crime scene response team left with their evidence and left the crime scene securely in the custody of local police.
In an interview with Utt two days later, Trout denied ever hurting the child.
Police arrested Pavelka a few days later, shortly after she attended her daughter’s funeral service.
Julie Riddle can be reached at 989-358-5693, email@example.com or on Twitter @jriddleX.