Port Arthur woman sentenced to jail for child abuse

Published 2:47 pm Wednesday, April 5, 2023

A Port Arthur woman was sentenced Wednesday to 20 years in prison for the abuse of three children.

Krystal Nicole Kirbow, 37, pleaded guilty to four of the charges of injury to a child in exchange for the dismissal of three additional counts.

The sentencing was held in Judge Raquel West’s 252nd District Court.

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Prosecutor Tatiana Zelezniak said the judge gave Kirbow the maximum sentence. The charge of injury to a child is a second-degree felony. Due to a previous robbery conviction Kirbow’s charge was elevated to a first-degree felony.

The 20-year sentences run concurrently.

Zelezniak said when the children were recovered they were 4, 6 and 7 years of age.

She described the injuries, saying the children had bruises all over them. One complained of being repeatedly hit with a spoon. Children had been hit in the eye and slapped in the face.

“The judge can take into account everything,” Zelezniak said.

The prosecutor said the children were locked in a room for hours with no access to water, electricity or a toilet.

The children were allowed one meal a day — a Lunchable — and even that wasn’t consistent, according to court information.

One child was hit so hard, she was unable to sit down without pain for more than two months.

Zelezniak said the forensic nurses who worked this case are pushing for a new statute called continuous physical abuse of a child charge for cases such as this.

“This is an example of why we need a continuous physical abuse of a child statute in the State of Texas, Zelezniak said.

Last year the Port Arthur Police Department requested the public’s help in locating Dylan Michael Wiggins and his girlfriend, Krystal Kirbow; saying between the two, they had 13 outstanding warrants for injury to a child.

They were arrested May 17.

In December, Wiggins pleaded guilty to three of six injury to a child charges in Judge West’s court.

As part of a plea deal with the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, the other three charges were dismissed, according to court information.

West sentenced Wiggins to 10 years for each charge to run concurrently.