Distressing footage has emerged showing a four-year-old boy being snatched from his bed before his horrific murder, as it’s revealed the alleged killer came back for the victim’s twin brother.
Cash Gernon and his twin brother, Carter, were sleeping in their toddler bed inside their home in Dallas, Texas, when an intruder entered their room just before 5am.
Vision from inside the room, obtained by DailyMail.com, shows a man standing and watching the twins sleep for more than a minute before lifting Cash from his bed and quickly carrying him away.
Cash and Carter were being taken care of by the girlfriend of Cash's father, police said.
The girlfriend, named by DailyMail.com as Monica Sherrod, identified the person who took Cash from his bed at 5am on Saturday as 18-year-old Darriynn Brown, police said.
Ms Sherrod said Cash's father had been absent since March.
Brown was known to the family as the brother of her older son’s friend, Ms Sherrod said, but she was unsure why he would target the children.
“I have watched it over and over again. I can't watch it anymore,” she told DailyMail.com.
“Other footage shows him returning at 7am. It seemed he was spooked by someone.
“It chills me to think that he could have been coming back for Carter.”
Two hours after allegedly taking Cash, Brown is seen inside the boys’ bedroom again, this time watching Carter.
He hovers above the child before walking away.
Brown is now being held on charges of kidnapping and burglary.
Neighbour who found boy ‘thought it was a dog'
Ms Sherrod called police shortly before 11am on Saturday to say Cash was missing. Meanwhile, police had found the boy dead around 6.50am, about 800 metres from her home.
Assistant Police Chief Albert Martinez has said it appeared the child suffered a violent death and that “an edged weapon” was used.
Antwainese Square, who lives in a Dallas neighbourhood, was on a morning walk when she saw the child's body laying on the street.
She initially thought it was a dog, she told NBC, but as she got closer she realised the chilling reality of what she was looking at.
"The baby didn't have shoes, he didn't have a shirt on and he was just laying there..." she told the network.
"For a kid to have to go through that, that's just disturbing, and that's disturbing for me to carry all day."
Brown’s bond is set at $1.5 million. His attorney, Robbie McClung, said Monday that she had not yet met with him so she could not comment.
Authorities have said additional charges are expected once forensic evidence has been reviewed.
Also, Dallas police said that Cash's mother did not know he and his twin brother were in the care of their father's girlfriend and that the mother had been searching for her sons. Police said Cash's twin is now with his mom.
Brown was arrested on April 27 on a misdemeanor charge of evading arrest in a case that’s still pending. According to court documents for that charge, he lives with his parents almost a kilometre from where the boy’s body was found. Neighbours have said Brown was known to walk in the area.
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