A young father in Arkansas smothered his infant daughter to stop her from crying — and then tried to revive the girl by shocking her with an electrified extension cord, police said.
Tyler Buchanan, 19, was charged with capital murder on Monday in the June 12 death of his 2-month-old daughter, Paisley. After initially telling investigators he fed the girl and then went back to sleep, Buchanan admitted smothering the girl in the middle of the night as her mother slept, according to court documents obtained by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
Buchanan originally told cops that he awoke and found his daughter not breathing, prompting him to cut off the end of a live extension cord in a crude attempt to resuscitate her, according to a probable cause affidavit.
But the twisted dad later confessed to holding the girl’s head against his shoulder to stop her from breathing because she was screaming incessantly and he wanted to sleep. Buchanan told officers he knew his actions were wrong, the affidavit indicates.
Buchanan also admitted to investigators that he smothered the girl at about 2 a.m. but did not call police. The baby’s mother eventually called police some seven hours later when she awoke and found Buchanan holding the girl and telling her she had not been breathing, according to the affidavit. The girl was later pronounced dead at a hospital in Van Buren.
Buchanan, who was scheduled to appear in a Crawford County courtroom Wednesday, could face the death penalty if convicted of capital murder. He remains held at the Crawford County Detention Center without bond, KFSM reports.
Buchanan was initially arrested on first-degree murder charges in June.
“The evidence is showing us that she was actually smothered sometime during the middle of the night,” Van Buren police Detective Jonathan Wear told the station.
Meanwhile, a neighbor told the station that Buchanan had seemingly embraced being the dad of the baby girl.
“He loved the baby,” neighbor Tricia Dewberry told KFSM. “He did talk … and he said the baby was a gifted baby, an advanced baby. He showed the baby off and let me play and hold the baby.”
An online fundraising campaign has raised more than $700 in memory of Paisley, as well as to help raise her mother’s two other children.
“The funeral expenses have been taken care of and we would like to thank everyone from the bottom of our hearts for the donations,” the website reads. “The mother and family will be moving to a new home and we would like to continue to help the family by easing the financial burden that comes with moving.”
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