Heartbreaking…Police Identify Remains of Battered Black Child Found in Duffel Bag

A missing child case came to a tragic close this week as investigators in Philadelphia announced on Wednesday that they’ve identified Damari Carter, 4, as the corpse found inside a duffel bag in March, WPVI-TV reports.

 

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In December, family members reported Damari missing, leading to a police investigation that resulted in authorities filing murder charges in January against his mother, Dominique Bailey, and her boyfriend, Kevin Spencer. The couple now faces additional charges.

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Back in December, Bailey, 28, reportedly told family members that a car struck and killed Damari, but the police couldn’t corroborate her claim. Under interrogation, Bailey confessed that she was involved in her son’s death.

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Her affidavit said she witnessed Spencer, 30, brutally beat Damari to the point that the child’s head was swollen and he had black eyes.

Staff Inspector Ernest Ransom said a neighbor living below Bailey’s West Philadelphia apartment heard Damari screaming when Spencer allegedly brutalized him on Dec. 7, PEOPLE reported.

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The next day, surveillance video showed Spencer dragging Damari’s body out of the apartment building in a trash bag, according to the police. But Bailey refused to tell police where they could find her son’s body.

City workers discovered Damari’s unidentified body in a duffel bag on March 18.

DNA samples confirmed on April 3 that the decomposed corpse was Damari, according to CBS News Philadelphia, which investigators revealed to the public on Wednesday.

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Authorities have now charged the couple with murder, conspiracy, endangering the welfare of a child, abuse of a corpse, false reporting, tampering and criminal use of a communication facility. They are scheduled for a preliminary court hearing on June 18.

“The way they found him is appalling. I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy, for someone to find him like that. And I applaud that worker who found him,” Aiyana Parrish, Damari’s cousin, told WPVI-TV when asked to comment on how the child’s remains were found.

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“I’m glad they have found him because now he can get the proper rest he needs. (He was) a smiling, happy little boy. He never had a picture where he wasn’t really smiling. He was always happy,” she added.

Damari loved superheroes, including Batman, Thor and Captain America. But his favorite was the Black Panther, whom he dressed up as on Halloween.

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His family plans to give him a proper burial after authorities release his remains.