Phoenix Father Arrested for Sexual Abuse, Murder of Infant Daughter

| by Lina Batarags

A father from Phoenix, Arizona, has been accused of sexually abusing and murdering his 1-month-old daughter.

Authorities said that 39-year-old Duryea Bennett was arrested on Thursday on first-degree murder and child abuse charges.

According to NY Daily News, Bennett called 911 at around 1 p.m. on Wednesday to report that one of his twin daughters had stopped breathing.

Upon arriving at the family’s address near 43rd Ave and Baseline Road, paramedics reportedly noticed that the girl had several bruises. The infant was rushed to a nearby hospital, where she was declared dead.

Sgt. Trent Crump said that medical staff determined that her skull and rib were fractured, and that she had marks consistent with sexual assault.

Crump noted that seven children, ages one month to 14 years old, were in the home at the time of the incident. Crump said that the mother was not present, and Bennett was the only adult in the house.

As KPHO reports, Bennett told police that it was the first time he was alone with the twin infants.

According to the police report, Bennett said he used force and hit the infant numerous times on the back and stomach in an attempt to stop her from choking on milk from an earlier feeding. He also told police he bit his daughter in an attempt to revive her.

Bennett was booked into a jail in Maricopa County.

During his initial court appearance on Thursday, a judge imposed a bond of $1 million for Bennett.

According to KPHO, Bennett has a criminal history with three prior felonies.

The surviving twin girl is reported to be in good condition.

Sources: NY Daily News, KPHO

Photo Sources: NY Daily News, KPHO