Unlike some of the kids I write about, this little girl was cherished, doted on, and clearly loved by everyone who knew her. Why am I writing about her, then? Because of the selfish, impulsive actions of a woman entrusted with her care.
This story will enrage you and likely make you think twice (and three times, and four) about who you trust to care for your children.
On December 9, 2020, Kristin Fridley Gantt dropped her two-year-old daughter, Fallon, off with her babysitter, 29-year-old Kirstie Flood. Although Kirstie had been babysitting Fallon three days a week since August, she was a close friend of Kristin’s for the past five years and had two young children of her own, so Kristin had no reason not to trust her.
Kristin told Channel 2, “She’d been watching Fallon since August, and treated her like her own child.”
(Side note: WSB-TV Channel 2 was the same station to which Christopher McNabb gave an oddly aggressive, eccentric statement on the night his daughter, Caliyah McNabb, went missing. I recently covered Caliyah’s story over two episodes of Suffer the Little Children Podcast.)
On the night of December 9, Kristin had agreed to allow Fallon to sleep over with Kirstie’s children, an older daughter and an infant son. At some point during the day, Kirstie took Fallon and her kids to the park.
Kristin said, “I had spoken to her around 8:30, and she said Fallon had just eaten dinner; she was fine; she was in bed, and then she called me hysterically about an hour later, saying that Fallon wasn’t moving.”
The babysitter told Kristin that Fallon had hit her head on a slide at the playground earlier.
According to a Facebook post made on December 15 by the Sandy Springs Police, “On December 9, 2020, the Sandy Springs Police Department launched an investigation after a medical call was received regarding an unresponsive child inside an apartment on Monterey Parkway in Sandy Springs.”
Sergeant Salvador Ortega of the Sandy Springs Police Department told Dox 5, “We got a 911 call about an unresponsive child. Sandy Springs Police Department along with EMS responded. They gave the child CPR, and they transported her to the hospital, where she was later pronounced dead by medical personnel.”
Fallon was rushed to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite, but the little blonde cherub had closed her big, beautiful blue eyes for the last time; tragically, she was pronounced dead on December 10.
Police did not release the victim’s name due to her age, but family members have confirmed to various news outlets and on Facebook that Fallon is, sadly, the deceased child.
Police immediately began an investigation into Fallon’s death. Doctors at Children’s Healthcare said the little girl’s injuries were not consistent with the story Kirstie had given about hitting her head after falling off a slide. An autopsy was conducted, during which the medical examiner determined that while in Kirstie’s care, Fallon had “suffered severe injuries that resulted in her death.” Those injuries included, according to the arrest affidavit, “a massive skull fracture” and lacerations to multiple organs, including her liver, spleen, and colon. Even more horrific, the autopsy also revealed bleeding from the baby’s vagina and anus. Fallon’s death was ruled a homicide.
A search warrant would also reveal that the situation was even more sinister than it initially appeared. When examining Kirstie’s cell phone, police found that around the time of her assault on Fallon, Kirstie conducted Safari searches for the following terms:
- “What type of people enjoy abusing other people’s children”
- “I hit my child and feel guilty”
- “What does it mean to have a sudden urge to beat a child that’s not yours”
Kristin said, “It’s like this evil was in front of my face for years, and I never saw it.”
On Friday, December 11, Kirstie Hannah Flood, who is originally from Smyrna, Georgia, was arrested and booked into the Fulton County Jail, where the accused in another case I’ve covered also currently resides. During her stay, Kirstie may even have occasion to chat with 21-year-old Titayanna Phillips, who was charged in July with the murder of her three-month-old son, Khy’undra Henderson.
The charges against Kirstie include:
- Malice murder
- Two counts of felony murder
- Aggravated battery
- First degree cruelty to children
Kirstie’s friends were reportedly stunned by her arrest. Sheri Travis told Channel 2, “She loves children. Her children are her whole world. She posts about her children every single day. She’s an amazing mom. She would never hurt a child.”
Kirstie’s criminal past has also come to light since her arrest, revealing that she was arrested five times before she even reached the age of 21 for charges running the gamut from battery to alcohol use and drug possession.
In 2010, she was arrested for battery, underage possession, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and criminal trespass.
Her last arrest took place in November of 2012 during a traffic stop, when she was found to be in possession of alprazolam, better known as Xanax, for which she did not have a prescription. For that offense, Kirstie pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three years of probation, which was revoked in 2013 after she failed to comply with conditions that included submitting to a drug test, paying court costs and fines, and completing 150 hours of community service. She cooled her heels in jail for 15 days before being released into her probation officer’s supervision.
Court records show that as of a complaint filed in September, Kirstie is in the process of being evicted from her apartment for non-payment of rent.
One acquaintance of Kirstie’s posted on Facebook, “My daughter lives upstairs from her..yes she has 2 kids of her own…crazy how just months ago she was slashing my daughters tires and I had to go defend my child, and the police didn’t have enough evidence to arrest her…maybe if they did…this baby would still be alive today..she seemed to love her kids very much…never in a million years would I have thought she’d do this to another child…she has watched my grandkids numerous times when her and my daughter was close…”
Another woman posted, “Kirstie used to watch [child]… and [child] told me Kirstie used to yell and hit [Kirstie’s daughter] all the time… she also screamed and put [child] in time out the last time she watched her… Literally a few days before Kirstie killed that innocent baby I had called austin super upset about Kirstie disciplining [our] daughter and how I wasn’t ok with someone raising their voice at my child. It hit really close to home…”
A former friend posted earlier today, “I wanted so bad to believe you were innocent, that this was an accident, that the charges were marked up. We got high together, partied together. You watched me get sober, I messed up, and then watched you get sober. You worked so hard to have the life you had. You were an amazing mother to two beautiful children. Kirstie, I don’t know what caused you to do this, but you deserve every punishment coming your way. I’m now sickened to [have] known you, to [have] ever associated with you… If you believe at this point she’s innocent, then I’m sorry. I won’t defend her. It will come out, and she’ll have life made in prison as a lifer. Her poor children didn’t deserve this either. Just fucking sick. #justiceforfallon”
In Fallon’s murder case, Kirstie is being represented by public defender Reona Florence Bray. She is scheduled for a bond hearing before Superior Court Judge Kevin Farmer on December 29, 2020 at 2:00 PM.
Kristin’s coworkers, Samantha Shelton and Robbin Yeager, created a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for the bereaved mother. Samantha, the CEO of Furkids Animal Rescue and Shelters, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Fallon loved animals as much as her mother does and may have followed in Kristin’s footsteps to become a veterinary technician. Samantha told the newspaper that Fallon, who had practice taking care of animals in need, was growing in her mother’s example to be kind and good-hearted.
Samantha said, “You just want to wake up. This is just a horrible, horrible nightmare. This is not real… It’s one thing to lose your child to an illness or an accident you can’t control, but to have someone you knew and trusted harm your child, kill your child… It’s going to be a long road to recovery. Our hearts are so heavy.”
Saying the Furkids team, including Kristin, had already seen too much cruelty as animal rescue workers, Samantha added, “We’ve seen the worst of humanity, we thought, but now we really have experienced it.”
In an update to the fundraising campaign, Samantha wrote, “We recognize it will take a long time for Kristin to process what has happened and come to terms with the new life ahead of her. We want to give her the time she will need to recover so we adjusted the fundraising goal to allow the community rally in support of Kristin, and in memory of her beloved child. No amount [of] money could ever help heal a crushed heart and spirit, but it will allow her to properly bury her child, pay her deductible and medical bills, and pay some living expenses until she is on her feet again.” As of this writing, the campaign has raised over $46,000 of its $50,000 goal. Donations are still being accepted here.
Fallon Lynn Fridley was born on September 27, 2018 in Hollywood, Florida, the only child of then 25-year-old Kristin Ann Fridley. Fallon was utterly adored by her mother, her stepfather, Cameron Gantt, and her extended family, including her Grandma Cheryl, Aunts Stephanie and Cindy, Great Aunt Sandy and Great Uncle Mike, and her great-grandparents.
Kristin and Cameron were just married in October, but Cameron was reportedly crazy about the little girl, who he loved like his own daughter.
According to her obituary, Fallon “was an absolute Angel on earth. Fallon loved to dance and sing. She loved Mr. Butters, her kitten. She had a favorite stuffed animal, Lovey, and he was always with her. Fallon never met a stranger and loved talking with people.”
Kristin told Channel 2 that Fallon was “the light of my life, the love of my life. This girl was gonna be the next president. She was gonna be a doctor.”
A funeral will be held for this precious little girl tomorrow morning (Thursday, December 17) at Poole Funeral Home Chapel, where a viewing took place earlier this evening. Fallon will be laid to rest tomorrow in the Rolling Hills Memory Gardens cemetery in Woodstock, Georgia.
Anyone with information about Fallon’s death is asked to contact Sandy Springs Detective W. Delaney at WDelaney@SandySpringsGA.gov or by calling (770) 551-3313.
Click here for my ongoing coverage of Fallon’s story.
Sources: 11 Alive; Sandy Springs Police on Facebook; Poole Funeral Home & Cremation Services; Facebook; WSB-TV 2; GoFundMe; the Atlanta Journal-Constitution; Fulton County Magistrate, State, and Superior Court Record Search; Fox5 Atlanta