A Ripley County jury deliberated about six hours Friday before convicting Nickalas Kedrowitz, 17, of two counts of murder in the killings of his 23-month-old half-sister, Desiree McCartney, and his 11-month-old stepbrother, Nathaniel Ritz.
He faces up to 65 years in prison for each murder count when he is sentenced Nov. 10.
Kedrowitz was arrested in August 2018 in the May 2017 killing of Desiree and the July 2017 killing of Nathaniel.
Both were pronounced dead at a hospital less than 90 days apart after being found unresponsive at the family’s home in Osgood, about 60 miles southeast of Indianapolis.
Ripley County Prosecuting Attorney Ric Hertel said Kedrowitz admitted to suffocating Desiree with a towel after she got out of the bathtub, and told investigators he had suffocated Nathaniel with a blanket, WLWT-TV reported.
According to an affidavit filed when he was arrested in 2018, Kedrowitz was speaking to investigators when he began “talking about saving Desiree and Nathaniel from hell and the chains of fire.”
He then added that “he didn’t want them to have to live in the hell that he did,” before going on to describe how he suffocated the children.
When asked what that “hell” was, the boy replied “chores,” before asking investigators if they’d seen the list of daily chores he had to complete, the affidavit states.
The case faced numerous delays over the years, including hearings to determine Kedrowitz’s mental competency and his waiver to adult court.