VAN BUREN, Ark. – A young father in Arkansas smothered his infant child before trying to revive her by shocking her with a live extension cord, police said in a Wednesday report.
Tyler Buchanan, 19, was charged Monday with capital murder in his daughter’s death, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported.
The 2-month-old girl, named Paisley, died on June 12 after Buchanan reportedly suffocated her as he tried to stop her from screaming so he could sleep.
According to the news outlet, Buchanan initially told police that the baby woke up around 5:30 that morning, and he fed her with a bottle before she went back to sleep.
The report indicates that when he woke up later, his daughter was not breathing, so he cut off the end of an extension cord and tried to use it to shock her back to life.
Buchanan later told police he held the child’s head against his shoulder to stop her from breathing because she kept screaming and he wanted to sleep.
The child’s mother called police around 9 a.m. when she woke up to see the infant not breathing.
Police said the baby had been deceased for several hours before they were contacted.
“The evidence is showing us that she was actually smothered sometime during the middle of the night,” said Detective Jonathan Wear.
The teenage-father acknowledged his wrongdoing, the Gazette reported, citing a probable cause affidavit.
According to the affidavit, Buchanan originally told police the baby woke up at 5:30 a.m., he then said he gave her a bottle and went back to bed.
He told police when he woke up later he noticed the child was not breathing and he tried to shock her heart using an extension cord that was cut, reported KFSM-TV.
However, the affidavit states Buchanan later admitted to a different story.
He admitted to holding the child’s head against his shoulder to stop her from breathing because she was crying loudly and he wanted her to stop.
He admitted that he smothered the child about 2 a.m. but never called for help, the affidavit said.
According to the affidavit, he told police he knew what he was doing was wrong.
Buchanan then took active steps to hide his crime, including not notifying the baby’s mom that lived in the same home, the affidavit states.
Buchanan’s neighbor, Tricia Dewberry, told KFSM-TV that “he loved the baby,” calling her “a gift baby, an advanced baby.” She added he “showed the baby off and let me play and hold the baby.”
Facing a capital murder charge, Buchanan reportedly could face the death penalty or life in prison, according to the report. He was being held in the Crawford County jail without bond, according to the station.