Report: Man had been beating girl for months - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Valley And State

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Report: Man had been beating girl for months

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Posted: Tuesday, September 1, 2009 11:00 pm

A Chandler man arrested in the death of a 3-year-old girl told police he has been beating her since June, but Monday’s beating was worse than usual, according to court documents.

Chandler couple arrested in toddler's death

Dauntorian Sanders, 23, said he and his girlfriend, Susan Witbracht, 26, have both beaten the girl with a nylon belt.

Witbracht, the mother of the 3-year-old victim, told police she demanded Sanders stop the beatings, but she did nothing to stop him.

Chandler police arrested the couple Tuesday after an autopsy that found the girl died from blunt force trauma.

“Witbracht further stated she adored the boyfriend even after knowing the results of the autopsy,” court documents state.

Witbracht and Sanders were each booked on suspicion of first-degree murder and child abuse.

Police were called to the home Monday about 2:50 p.m. when the child was unresponsive.

She was pronounced dead at 4:30 p.m. at Gilbert Mercy Hospital.

She had bruises on her legs, arms, torso and head that were consistent with a belt and belt buckle, police said.

“Witbracht admitted to witnessing the boyfriend hit the child several times with the belt and watched him drop her to the floor,” the document states.

Witbracht said she wasn’t involved in the fatal beating, however.

Sanders said he lost control and beat the child more forceful than usual.

“Suspect admitted he knew child was hurt and that is why he checked on child, which resulted in finding child not breathing, which lead to 911 call,” the document states.

In the 911 call, Sanders uses a curse word as an adjective to refer to the girl, and he calmly tells the dispatcher she is not breathing.

Toward the end of the 40-second call, Witbracht can be heard in the background pleading with the girl to breathe.

Sgt. Joe Favazzo, Chandler police spokesman, said investigators haven’t found any history of police or CPS involvement with the couple.

There were no other children in the home, Favazzo said.

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