Afraid that he would lose his teenage lover who hated kids, a father in the UK has killed his 3-year-old son.
A 22-year-old man from Camden, United Kingdom, David "D.J." Creato Jr., has been charged with first-degree murder and second-degree endangering the welfare of a child in the death of his 3-year-old son, Brendan Creato, at the Camden County Superior Court.
Creato Jr. is said to have murdered his son because his 17-year-old girlfriend, Julia Spensky, did not like kids and was uncomfortable with him keeping a child he had from a former relationship.
David Creato Jr. at his trial
Photo Credit: Courier Post
The Courier-Post reports that weeks before Brendan's pajama-clad body was found in Haddon Township woods after he was declared missing, Creato Jr. was distraught and arguing with Spenksy to keep her from leaving him and vowed to do anything to keep her, including getting the toddler out of the way.
Assistant Prosecutor Christine Shah of the Camden County, said Spenky did not want to share Creato with his 3-year-old from a previous relationship and with him being worried she would leave him, he had to kill the boy.
Shah added that Spensky had warned Creato she disliked children and resented his devotion to the boy and authorities learned of the fraught relationship mostly from the couple's numerous text messages and online postings.
Creato was then driven to a point of murder when his girlfriend issued an ultimatum to him and on October 13, 2015, Brendan disappeared and his father was the first to report his disappearance.
The murdered Brendan Creato
Photo Credit: Courier Post
He reportedly called 911 at 6:07 am on the day and told the dispatcher that his child must have unlocked the door and wandered off.
"I just woke up, and my 3-year-old's missing. I just woke up and he wasn't in my apartment. I don't know if he wandered out or what happened. I don't know where he is. The door was locked. I guess he unlocked it and left," Creato had said, according to a recording of the call.
But Shah said that going by the recording, Creato's voice had a 'flat affect and tone.' It was discovered during investigations that Brendan had been 'very afraid of the dark,' to the point that he had been reluctant to go to the bathroom at night, according to interviews with grandparents and other relatives who had babysat him.
According to Shah, the stretch - about three-quarters of a mile - between Creato's apartment and the muddy spot by the Cooper River where Brendan's body was found, is extremely dark at night, very steep at one point, and difficult to negotiate.
Much of Creato's life was online, Shah told the court with investigators examining 9,487 text messages he exchanged with his girlfriend after meeting her in June on Tinder, a dating website, and during an 'intense romantic relationship' that continued into October.
Shah said the teen had written a series of 'unbelievable' blogs in which she described her 'strong dislike of children.'
Shah said medical examiners determined the boy died of 'homicidal violence.' Superior Court Judge Edward McBride set bail at $750,000 - lower than the $1 million sought by Shah, but higher than the $250,000 a defense attorney said might be appropriate.
If convicted of murder, Creato would face a minimum of 30 years in prison without parole and a maximum term of life imprisonment with at least 67 years without parole, the judge said.