Four couples are embroiled in a custody battle over a 5-year-old girl whose parents' long-running domestic dispute boiled over into violence last summer in West Point.

Kamiah Marchant was in the bedroom with her mother, Misty, when her father, Kenny, blasted his way into the house and, after shooting to death a family friend, killed her mother with a shotgun.After the early morning July 4 killing of Kirt Swann, 32, and Misty Marchant, 29, Kenny Marchant, also 29, fled to his father's home in Clinton and then killed himself with a final single shot from his shotgun.

Four couples - three of them relatives and one of them friends of the dead parents - are involved in 2nd District Judge Michael Glasmann's decision on visitation and temporary or permanent custody of Kamiah.

The judge has set a Feb. 2 hearing to sort out the claims.

Kamiah was staying with Tammy Perea, Ogden, a half-sister of Misty Marchant, until last week, when she went to live with Paul and Angela Marchant, Layton. Paul is the brother of Kenny Marchant.

Another half-sister of Misty Marchant, Theresa Lloyd, and her husband Teddy, of Corona, Calif., have petitioned the court for custody, as have friends of the parents, Wade and Allyn Draper of West Point.

Because of the brutal nature of the Marchants' deaths, witnessed by Kamiah, the custody battle has been fierce, stirring up hard feelings among the parties.

The judge has asked three of the families - the Marchants, Drapers and Pereas - to undergo psychological evaluation to determine whether they could provide the best environment for Kamiah. He has also asked the involved parties to not talk to the news media about the case.