Missouri duo forced neighbors to sexually abuse daughter, 4, and then tortured her to death to remove a 'demon'
COLE CAMP, MISSOURI: Authorities have shockingly revealed how a couple was forced to sexually abuse their four-year-old daughter before she was tortured to death. Ethan Mast, 25, and his partner Kourtney Aumen, 21, allegedly also beat their neighbors' young child from head to toe before drowning her in a freezing lake and leaving her to die of her injuries, Metro reported. The evil duo, from Warsaw, was arrested after the child succumbed to her injuries on Sunday. During interrogation, they told officers that they targeted their neighbors for torture because the family's mother had been "possessed by a demon." “Based on what I know, I think this could be some kind of honest-to-goodness religious-type episode,” Benton County Sheriff Eric Knox told KSDK in a phone interview.
Authorities were summoned to the home of the neighbors, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and found the couple's four-year-old daughter wrapped in a blanket and covered in bruises. According to the report, the child had been beaten with a wooden spoon, a leather belt, and later submerged in freezing water. Speaking to investigators, the victim's father astonishingly revealed that Aumen and Mast had been torturing him, his wife, his two sons, and his late daughter over the course of two weeks.
The man's wife was also covered in dark bruises on her face and back, and the couple's two-year-old son was also badly bruised, police found. However, the youngest child, reportedly an infant boy, had no visible injuries.
The couple revealed how Aumen and Mast had come over and started beating their two-year-old with a wooden spoon and forced his parents to watch. Police asked the father "how he could let people do this to his family and he stated they were told (his wife) had a ‘Demon’ inside her and her children would end up just like her if it was not taken care of,” per a probable cause statement. Aumen and Mast are also said to have threatened to kill him if he intervened, according to KRCG.
It is alleged that the abuse meted out to the family only grew worse over the fortnight, with Aumen and Mast forcing the parents to sexually abuse their four-year-old daughter. Police said that the horror duo showed up to beat the girl with a leather belt on Sunday. She cried out for help, but to no avail. The child was then taken outside and submerged in a freezing pond with her head held underwater. According to the report, Mast punched and belted the girl and beat her two-year-old brother with a wooden spoon -- all the while forcing the father to watch in agony.
The girl was left shivering following the ordeal and died from her injuries shortly after. Aumen and Mast left the scene but were soon arrested by the authorities. They are now facing second-degree murder as well as assault and sexual abuse charges, and are currently remanded in custody ahead of their next court hearing. That said, it is unclear if the victim's parents will face any legal consequences.
Benton County is about 100 miles southeast of Kansas City Missouri and has a population of just 19,000.
“To have something of this magnitude happen in our sleepy little community is insane,” Knox told KSDK.