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Dad ‘kills toddler for interrupting video game’, say police

Two-year-old Ellie Sanders was allegedly bitten and smothered to death by her own father after she interrupted his video game.

A man murdered his own two-year-old daughter in a “fit of rage” after she interrupted his video game at a crucial moment, police have claimed.

Ellie Sanders, two, had been home alone with her five-year-old brother and her father Anthony Michael Sanders on December 12 last year while her mother attended an art show in their Texan home town.

When her mother returned home at around 8.30pm, she asked where Ellie was and was told she was asleep in bed.

Half an hour later, her brother raised the alarm when he went in to check on her and found her unresponsive.

Paramedics were called but Ellie was pronounced dead in hospital at 10.10pm. Doctors found bruising around her eyes, blood behind one ear and adult-sized bite marks.

Her official cause of death was asphyxiation, allegedly when her father clamped his hand over her mouth and nose until she stopped breathing.

When questioned, Sanders said he had no idea what had caused Ellie’s injuries. He claimed she had been fine when he changed her nappy shortly before his wife’s return.

He was arrested on April 15, the day after the medical examiner ruled Ellie’s death a homicide.

Police claim he attacked his daughter after she distracted him from his video game, which he was an avid fan of.

“Just a fit of rage-type deal, anger,” Sergeant Jason Babcock told the Star-Telegram. “He’s very involved in computer gaming. That’s something he did constantly. She may have interrupted him somehow. His day may have been interrupted.”

Sanders has been charged with murder and remanded in custody awaiting his trial.

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