Father says 2 year old witnessed double murder

By Fred Childers – bio|email

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) –   On Sunday Diana rivers, and her sister Jenny Knight were stabbed to death at this Desoto parish home.

"They were probably two of the greatest people you could ever know," said Jason Lakey, brother-in-law of Stephen Rivers. Rivers has been arrested and charged with their murder.

Five children witnessed the attack. One of them was the two year old girl of Lakey.

"My little girl saw about 90 percent of it, the only thing she didn't see was Stephen physically stabbing Diana. I'm pretty sure she saw all of Jenny, and all of the chaos and bleeding before paramedics could arrive," said Lakey.

Lakey, and family friend Amber Cliff say Rivers has a history of violence and making death threats against his estranged wife Diana.

"If he did this to the woman he supposedly loved, he would do it to anybody," said Cliff.

"This is a systematic failure to protect this woman and her children," said Attorney Joel Pearce who represented both Diana and Stephen as a couple in a personal injury case, and says Stephen's alleged attack could have been prevented.

"There was a warrant issued for his arrest and had been picked up, had Desoto Parish Sheriff's Office picked Stephen up, when this warrant was issued in Feb 2010, there would have been a probation hold on him, and he would not have been able to bond out of jail," said Pearce.

Stephen is no stranger to the courts, there was reportedly a probation warrant for his arrest, stemming from a DWI.

"Any officer that even heard or thought of his name should have already known that he had this kind of history," said Lakey.

"It shocks me to know that he knew how good of a parent or mother they were to their kids, and of all people he's the one that did it," said Cliff.

The Desoto Parish Sheriff's office tells KSLA News 12 that deputies do check for local warrants and national warrants known as NCIC - but only felonies on the national level.

Stephen River's probation warrant was issued out of Caddo parish, and apparently was not noticed.