A four-year-old boy, Nova Knaub, in Las Vegas, Nevada was allegedly stabbed to death by his father in a murder-suicide, ABC News reports. The Metropolitan Police Department stated that just before 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Tyler Knaub forced his way into the home of his estranged girlfriend, Cierra Cabrera, 35, and used plastic zip ties to tie Nova and Cabrera.
The 28-year-old father began violently stabbing his son and his girlfriend before turning the knife on himself in a murder-suicide, according to police.
It was reported that Nova’s grandmother was in the home during the attack, but she was not injured. After calling 911, authorities say she was able to remove the victims from the home and drive them to Southern Hills Hospital where Nova was pronounced dead just shortly after arrival.
The child’s mother sustained injuries to her face and neck during the knife attack and was transferred to the University Medical Center, where she is listed in critical condition.
When Las Vegas police officers arrived at the scene, they discovered Knaub’s body in the bathroom of the home. He was found with several self-inflicted knife wounds, officials say.
A neighbor, Savoy Chau, who lives across the street from the home where the murder-suicide took place stated that she heard the family screaming during the attack. She is still shaken by what transpired in the Las Vegas home.
Authorities believe that a longstanding custody battle may have been the motive for the murder-suicide. Court records show that Knaub requested joint custody on June 1, 2013, claiming that he hadn’t seen his son in months. In a letter to the judge, Knaub wrote:
In a letter to the judge, Knaub wrote:
“We enjoy our time together, and I am a great parent to him.”
His request for joint custody was denied. Two years later, in 2015, a domestic violence call was made at the home, and Knaub was arrested and charged with battery and domestic violence. The next day, Cabrera filed an order of protection.
The Las Vegas police homicide Lt. Dan McGrath was stunned after learning that a father supposedly stabbed his son to death and injuring his girlfriend before taking his own life, calling the attack an “inexplicable tragedy.”
He went on to say that he doesn’t “have words to explain another incident like this. We’ve had too many of these. As a community I think, we really need to come together because of innocent people and children losing their lives.”
An investigation is ongoing.
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