Police responded to a call in the 4500 block of Wilde Street, just off Greene Lane in Manayunk, for an apparent murder-suicide.

Steve Tawa | KYW Newsradio

Father and daughter, 7, found dead in Manayunk home in apparent murder-suicide

August 06, 2018 - 12:59 pm

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A 7-year-old girl and her 45-year-old father are dead after an apparent murder-suicide in Manayunk.

Philadelphia police were called before 11 a.m. Monday to a home  in the 4500 block of Wilde Street near Green Lane.

Authorities say the girl's stepfather found her on the living room floor with a bag over her head.

The girl's father was discovered in a second-floor bedroom due to an apparent suicide.

Authorities say there was an ongoing custody dispute between the girl's father and mother. She was last seen on Saturday morning when she was dropped off at her father's house. She was supposed to return to her mother's custody on Sunday.

Philadelphia Police Capt. John Ryan said it is clear from the scene that the father killed his daughter, though the note left at the scene does not confirm it.

"It shook some very experienced and long-tenured police commanders," he added.

Neighbor Mary Lou Crompton, who has lived in the area for 38 years, said the father was always happy and friendly whenever they bumped into each other in the neighborhood.

She remembered he was especially happy around his daughter, buying her candy from a store up the street.

"He was telling me a while back that he had a custody problem with the daughter's mother," she recalled. "He was kinda worked up about that. He was very agitated. ... It's very sad. I feel for him."

Kevin Dougherty, who also lives a few doors down, knew about domestic issues.

"I've seen police four to five times over the last six months or so," he added. "The stepfather was in shambles. He looked like he was in shock for about an hour. I saw first responders from the fire department and asked what happened. He said, 'It's a bad one. It's a bad one.' "

"It's any parent's worst nightmare," added Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector James Kelly. "This is your absolute worst-case scenario. This is terrible. It should never have happened, but unfortunately, here we are."

Police say the investigation remains ongoing.


KYW Newsradio's Kim Glovas and Steve Tawa contributed to this story.