A suspect is in custody after a 4-year-old boy was found slain in the middle of a Dallas street early Saturday with “multiple wounds” from what police believe was some kind of edged weapon.
The Dallas Police Department confirmed the arrest of an adult male late Saturday, but stopped short of identifying the suspect and gave no further details on the brutal killing of the tot.
The boy was found lying in a road in the 7500 block of Saddleridge Drive shortly before 7 a.m., Executive Assistant Chief Albert Martinez told NBC Dallas-Fort Worth. Martinez said the circumstances surrounding the boy’s death were “unusual” and that an “edged weapon” was thought to have been used.
“Unfortunately a small child was lost today in our city through a violent act and we will pursue justice to find whoever did this and bring some sort of closure, not only to family but to the community,” Martinez said.
“We are shocked, we are very angry about what has happened to this small child,” he said.
Police say the toddler, who is believed to have lived in the area, was likely killed at around 5 a.m.
A neighborhood resident told local media she had gone on a morning walk just after 6:30 a.m. when she stumbled upon the grisly scene, at first mistaking the slain child in the street for a dog.
As she got closer, she said, she noticed the boy had no shoes or shirt on.
“That’s when I noticed the baby had ants at the bottom of his feet so I knew he was deceased then,” Square told the Dallas Morning News. “It was heart-wrenching because this baby could have been no more than 5.”
“I’m a little traumatized,” Square said separately to WFAA. “I’m a little afraid, I don’t know what happened to him. To see that, to walk up on it… I don’t feel safe at all.”
Another resident, Lila Gilbert, told the Dallas Morning News police had come to her home asking if her family was missing a young child. Gilbert said she then went outside to see a body in the road covered by a blanket, but when the blanket at one point slipped off, she saw what looked like bite marks on the child's face.
“It’s so shocking to me that it’s a 4-year-old, someone’s baby. That could’ve been my little cousin or brother or something,” Gilbert was quoted saying. “It’s just the point that he’s gone now. It’s just terrifying.”