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Airman faces court martial for child neglect

ABILENE, Texas (AP) - Military officials say the court martial for a Dyess Air Force Base airman facing charges of neglecting a toddler who died is scheduled to begin Tuesday.

The 7th Bomb Wing said in a prepared statement Christopher Perez faces charges of dereliction of duty, child endangerment and adultery. At the time of the alleged offenses he was living with Tiffany Klapheke (klah-PEEK'), the wife of another airman. After her arrest, Klapheke said her husband's deployment made her too stressed to take care of their three children, which led to the death of her 22-month-old daughter from malnutrition and dehydration in August. Upon his return Thomas Klapheke filed for divorce.

Perez's attorneys say he had little access to the children and didn't want to interfere with the way they were being raised.

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