After 3-year-old Olivia Jensen's body was found buried in a shallow grave on the same day that her father reported her missing, several local news agencies filed a request for records from the Department of Children and Family Services.
On Wednesday August 26, Wyandotte County Judge Michael Russell heard arguments from both sides against the request for Olivia's case file to be released.
According to KMBC both the prosecution and defense argued that they believe the release of the case file could jeopardize a fair trial.
The Emporia Gazette stated that under a 2018 law the DCF is required to release files where child abuse results in a fatality. According to DCF spokesman Mike Deines, they were evidently still working to determine whether Olivia died from child abuse or neglect despite the fact that the probable cause affidavit stated that there were signs of physical abuse found on her body and her cause of death was a brain bleed.
According to a summary released July 31 by the DCF, two calls were received concerning Olivia's wellbeing. The first was received on February 28 which was deemed "unsubstantiated" after a visit to the home allegedly the same day as the call.
The second call was received on June 22, several weeks before Olivia was found dead, expressing concern about drug use in the home. The family was contacted a week later via video call and a week after that, Howard Jansen III took a drug test in which he tested positive for THC.
“My deal is I don’t see the objection. Because I feel if it’s the truth, how does the truth getting out hurt anything? “ Howard Jansen II said according to Fox4KC. “The powers that be need to start showing people that justice will be served. Hiding things, I don’t believe is the way to do it.”
Clearly, questions remain as to why a case file would have 533 pages if there were only two calls received concerning the welfare of a 3-year-old.
“Unless somebody up there explains to me, you know, where I understand why, I’m gonna feel like it’s more of the cover up and I feel there is a cover up going on,” Jansen said.
The next court date is scheduled for September 15 at which time Russel hopes to have made a decision concerning the release of the case file.