CABARRUS COUNTY: Child abuse victim Kilah Davenport dies at 4 - WSPA.com

Child abuse victim Kilah Davenport dies at 4

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CABARRUS COUNTY, N.C. -

The 4-year-old girl who became the face of child abuse legislation in North Carolina and Washington, D.C. died Thursday.

Many North Carolinians know her name and face, but only Kilah Davenport's family knows the heartache her death has caused.

"We just appreciate everyone's support and their thoughts and prayers for us. Please continue to pray for our family," Kilah's grandmother, Leslie Davenport, said. "This is the second hardest thing that we've ever been through. The first was when Kilah got hurt and now we lost her."

Kilah was born in April 2009 and by age three she had just started dancing and singing on her own, but she would not walk again.

Joshua Houser, her stepfather, threw her against the wall in a fit of rage - leaving a hole in the wall and causing irreversible damage to Kilah's brain.

She would never be the same again but she started a new journey and forced everyone to pay more attention to child abuse.

Governor McCrory signed "Kilah's Law" into the books on April 24, 2013. The law stiffened the penalties for child abuse. 

Kilah still hadn't been able to do the things she used to do, but Houser recently lost his freedom after being convicted by a jury for his crimes.

Three weeks shy of her fifth birthday, Kilah died Thursday afternoon.

"But we know she's dancing again in heaven again. She's singing and she's playing and she's happy and she's not in pain anymore," her grandmother said.

Kilah's death not only caught the attention of those in power, but her death stopped them in their tracks.

"Governor McCrory called me when he heard that Kilah had passed to offer his condolences and he came to be with me and my family and I just appreciate that," said Davenport.

Now, North Carolina will always know the name Kilah.

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