Missouri parents sexually abuse 4-year-old Jessica Mast and watch as she is killed by neighbors to remove 'demon'
The girl was allegedly beaten before being drowned into a freezing pond and left to die on the banks by neighbors
BENTON COUNTY, MISSOURI: Police have arrested the parents of a four-year-old girl, who was allegedly beaten before being drowned into a freezing pond and left to die on the banks by neighbors, on Christmas eve in Missouri. James Mast and Mary Mast -- parents of little Jessica Mast -- were taken into custody in connection with her death, the Benton County Sheriff’s Office said as reported by The Sun. The arrests of the victim’s parents came as authorities believed their efforts were not enough to stop the alleged killers - Ethan Mast and Kourtney Aumen. According to probable cause statement, Mast and Aumen forced the parents to sexually abuse the little girl before she died.
28-year-old Mary has been charged with first-degree endangering the welfare of a child resulting in death and first-degree domestic assault while the father of Jessica was pressed with first-degree endangering the welfare of a child, and first-degree endangering the welfare of a child resulting in serious physical injury charges. The court documents stated that the 28-year-old father told investigators that Ethan and Kourtney, who were also their neighbors, went to the same church where his family used to go too.
Investigators were told by James that when it was declared that Mary had a "demon" inside her, the neighbors allegedly beat their kids over the period of several weeks, and as parents, they could not do anything as they would be beaten or shot. On the day of the alleged murder, December 20, 35-year-old Ethan along with the 21-year-old Kourtney went to the victim’s family at eight in the morning and beat her while forcing her parents to watch. Later in the day, they even used a belt to hurt the child, police said. A probable cause statement from Sgt. Chris Wilson accuses the neighbors of sexual abuse and forcing the little girl’s parents to use a foreign object to perform sexual acts on her.
Not just that, the alleged criminals beat Mary too that day. When authorities responded to the scene, they found her in a bedroom with her two sons, a two-year-old toddler and an infant. Her back had “severe bruising” while her two-year-old suffered critical bruising and blisters. The mother-son duo was shifted to a local hospital for treatment.
The same day James told officers that his daughter “had been beaten, submerged in a pond, then left to freeze on the bank”. He also alleged that the neighbors told him “Satan would come” if he did anything to protect the child. When Sgt. Wilson questioned 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,” the probable cause statement added. “Based on what I know, I think this could be some kind of honest-to-goodness religious-type episode,” Benton County Sheriff Eric Knox said as reported by KTLA 5.
Meanwhile, reports said though Ethan shares the last name with the victim’s family, they are not related to each other. Both the suspects are facing numerous felony charges, police said.