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Cold Case: Brenda Banaski Missing Teen

Kira Kastenhuber Killed Her BFF

Kira Kastenhuber killed her friend, Desirae Withey, a single mother of two small girls. Although you could hardly call the two women friends by the time she killed her. Maybe never. Not really close friends, anyway. They both worked at Creative Food Ingredient, a baked ingredient company in Perry, New York. A lot of locals worked there are people actually move to that town in order to work there.  Not only did Kira work there but so did her ex husband and her ex boyfriend.

Desirae first lived with her parents when she got the job. She moved in with her sister in Perry a short time later and then into an apartment of her own at 84 Borden Avenue with her two Zoe, 2, and Sophie, 6. Her friends called her Desi and she was a budding artist with dreams of art school.

Desi knew Kira and had no problems with her. Even when she started to date one of Kira's ex boyfriends, she never tried to cause an issue over it. Kira, on the other hand, told everyone she did not mind but it was obvious she did. She obsessed over it, asking fellow coworkers for gossip. Things steadily got worse. Kira loudly confronted Desi at the company Christmas party in December and had to be escorted from the property. She took to showing up at Desi's house saying they 'needed to talk' often, just opening the door and walking in. Still Desi tried to keep the peace.

Eventually, on February 6th 2015, Kira broke into Desi's apartment through a window while she and the girls slept. Desi's sister had left around midnight. Young, innocent Sophie woke up around 7 a.m. to find the cold, bloody body of her mother and ran to alert the neighbors.

Police have been very tight lipped about the details of this case, saying only that they were bizarre and gruesome. From evidence, we know Kira tortured Desi. She stabbed her in the leg and chest. She asphyxiated her to death. An initial view of Desi by police revealed marks on her neck and wounds to her right wrist. An autopsy revealed deep cuts inside her vagina, indicating the possibility that a sharp object was used to rape her. Bruises were found “bodywide” during an autopsy, which police and coroners testified show Desi was strangled.
In preparation for the murder, Kira made an extensive list with entries such as:

  • Tie Hair Back
  • Cut her Fingernails
  • Remember Gloves

She remembered to clip her dead friends fingernails but left the clippings at the scene. She went home to her mom's house. The next morning, she overdosed and when the cops came in response to her mom's 911 call, she handed them a confession/suicide note. She was taken to the hospital and arrested upon her release.

“To whom it may concern,” the note allegedly written by Kira Kastenhuber begins. “This is my confession. I did it. I did it all with no help. I just became so enraged I couldn’t help myself so I killed her.”

She was sentenced to 15 years to life with a plea deal. Much controversy is surrounding this case because so many people feel she may get paroled even though the injuries she inflicted were horrific. A lot of people feel she is really remorseful and the circumstances surrounding the crime will not occur again. I have a hard time believing that. I know women who flip out like this when a man doesn't choose them. It is likely to happen again, as long as there is a man interested in her.


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