The 32-year-old Anchorage man who's accused of severely beating a 7-year-old girl was back in court Wednesday. It's been six months since police say Byron Syvinski attacked Am-Marie Martin. The girl's mother says that day has changed her daughter's life forever and is now demanding answers.
Even though Wednesday’s appearance by Syvinski was for a pretrial conference, Am-Marie's mom she plans on being at every one of them so she can keep asking why Syvinski wasn't taken off the streets before he could harm her daughter.
Am-Marie Martin was seven years old on June 5, when police say this man attacked her because she refused to give him her bike. Am-Marie turned eight while recovering in the hospital. Six months later, her accused attacker, Byron Syvinski is still awaiting trial on charges of assault and robbery.
“She got her moments where it’s hard for her to keep up with everybody and it frustrates her really bad; she gets migraines constantly,” said Andrea Dunwoody, Am-Marie’s mom. “Its hard to see him, I just want this to be over, so we can move on.” She says she will attend all of Syvinski's hearings to stand up for her daughter who didn't deserve what happened. “She wanted to come today, I’m not ready for her to come… I'm not ready to see her face when she looks at him, because she remembers. She remembers him coming up to her, how he was talking to her, the unzipping of her jacket, and her saying no, and screaming for me.”
Dunwoody says her daughter's suffering could have been avoided had Syvinski's calls for help been heeded. Dunwoody says because both police and the Alaska Psychiatric Institute ignored Syvinski's pleas, her daughter ended up in a hospital. “…When he had already been telling people he needed help and they refused to help him,” said Dunwoody. “Its ridiculous, they need to man up and take responsibility for what happened to my daughter too.”
But Syvinski says the little girl provoked him and has asked that his charges be reduced.
“She's eight and he's a 236 pound man,” said Dunwoody. “What can a little girl do to provoke a guy like that?” In the meantime, all this mother can do is sit it out and wait.
“I just want to jump over and beat the crap out of him with the chair and see how he likes it,” said Dunwoody. “But the mother in me and the moral person in me, the believer of god is telling me we have to have faith.”
Dunwoody says she has to believe the system will work for the little girl who was beaten up over a bike. It’s still a day-by-day process for Am-Marie, who her mom Andrea calls a survivor. And while she doesn't trust anyone besides her family and friends, Am-Marie is doing well in the third grade where she even got an award for personal success, something her mom says is from all the support she's got from the community. Also Dunwoody is looking into the details of Syvinski’s release and may consider even suing because of what happened to her daughter.