By: Benjamin Lloyd , Ashley Portillo
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KOAA) — It’s been over three years since 11-year-old Gannon Stauch was reported missing from his family home in the Lorson Ranch neighborhood southeast of Colorado Springs. His stepmother Letecia Stauch is accused of killing him in January 2020. Today, the first-degree murder trial and the case against Letecia Stauch began at the El Paso County Courthouse.
Tuesday is the first day of witness testimony. The prosecution called Gannon’s father, Al Stauch, to the stand to talk about his son. He began by talking about how Gannon dreamed of being a YouTube gamer.
The father says he was out of state for work related to his National Guard service when Letecia told him Gannon was not feeling well and did not go to school, but did go to a friend’s house and had not returned. Al said he immediately worked to travel back home to help.
According to Al Stauch, “One of the things about Gannon, he absolutely loved his mom, and had some of that same love for Letecia. He was a mama’s boy. I think he had love in his heart for her, I don’t think he was afraid of her.”
District Attorney Michael Allen questioned the witness about his relationship with Letecia regarding his work with the National Guard while serving in Alaska. According to Al Stauch, Letecia filed a claim of sexual harassment related to someone he was serving with; and this caused him to be transferred to Colorado. Additionally, the defendant also told him she was pregnant, which was not true, according to Al Stauch.
Throughout the morning, Letecia Stauch has had her head facing down, with her hair covering her face during testimony.
In a line of questioning about the day Gannon was reported missing, the father testified about photos of Gannon in bed sent by Letecia that same morning. He says it was unusual for the blankets to be piled on the bed as seen in the photo, and recognized a blanket that is not normally used by Gannon. He also noted the bed was pulled away from the wall.
The prosecution appears to be pursuing a line of questioning about what Letecia Stauch told her husband versus reality, specifically about claims of trips, her relationship with Gannon, and claims of her being a victim of criminal activity.
The prosecution is expected to playback recordings of several phone calls involving the defendant made to Al Stauch after Gannon was reported as missing.
This story was originally published on April 3, 2023, by KOAA in Colorado Springs, an E.W. Scripps Company.