Syneca Ashley Sr. repeatedly stabbed his 4-year-old son during a police standoff that prompted officers to storm into the home and save the boy’s life, police in Pennsylvania said.
The incident took place in North Versailles, which is 15 miles out of Pittsburgh. Police said the 28-year-old father was in a domestic dispute with the boy’s mother just before 10 p.m. As the New York Post reported, the mother soon left the house, leaving the 4-year-old alone with Syneca Ashley Sr.
A short time later, the father allegedly threatened to kill the boy, prompting the woman to call the police. When officers arrived, Ashley barricaded himself inside, the New York Post reported. SWAT teams arrived, but police remained at bay as the standoff continued and Ashley reportedly grew angrier.
As the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported, Ashley became increasingly agitated and made continual threats to harm or kill the boy. At close to 3:20 a.m., officers said they heard screams from the boy and SWAT teams broke into the home. They found that Ashley had stabbed the young boy in the chest several times. Officers removed the boy, who was rushed to a hospital with critical injuries.
Ashely was arrested without any further incident.
This is not the first disturbing case of a father lashing out violently to make the news this week. In Oklahoma, police say 35-year-old Jeffrey Don Edwards grew enraged when his daughter would not do the dishes. After the girl left to return to her mother’s house, Edwards allegedly took the girl’s pet dogs to the edge of his property and shot them to death. Police say Edwards later bragged about the killing to a convenience store employee, showing no remorse for it.
Family members said they were shocked at the killings and heartbroken to have lost their beloved pets.
“They are devastated and in shock that their dad would hurt them that way,” the girl’s mother, Danielle Depee, told The Associated Press. “Both my kids never thought he would do what he did.”
Syneca Ashley Sr. has been charged with attempted homicide, aggravated assault, child endangerment, and terroristic threats for allegedly stabbing his 4-year-old son. The boy remains in the hospital in critical condition but was expected to survive.