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Mother, two children and friend died as result of ‘violent attack’ at sleepover, inquest hears

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Four people found in a house in Killamarsh died as a result of a “violent attack” at a sleepover, an inquest has heard.

John Paul Bennett, 13, Lacey Bennett, 11, their mother Terri Harris, 35, and Lacey’s friend Connie Gent, 11, were killed at a home in Derbyshire on 19 September.

Damien Bendall, 31, has since been charged with all four murders and has been remanded into custody by a crown court judge.

Killamarsh accused Damien Bendall
Image: Killamarsh accused Damien Bendall

An inquest, which opened at Chesterfield Coroner’s Court today heard a relative of Bendall had called Dorset Police to say the defendant had sustained a self-inflicted stab wound.

Police officers met Bendall at Chandos Crescent, Killamarsh. and following a conversation entered the house and found the bodies of the four victims.

Area coroner Peter Nieto said the inquest would be suspended until the conclusion of the pending criminal trial.

The deaths sparked an outpouring of grief and tributes from the local community, with around 30 people attending a vigil the Monday after their deaths.

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Flowers near to the scene in Chandos Crescent, Killamarsh, near Sheffield, where the bodies of John Paul Bennett, 13, Lacey Bennett, 11, their mother Terri Harris, 35, and Lacey’s friend Connie Gent, 11, were discovered at a property on Sunday morning.
Image: The deaths prompted an outpouring of grief

Jason Bennett, father of John Paul and Lacey, previously told Sky News: “I’m broken, I just want to kiss my babies.

“I just want to kiss them and hold them. TikTok queen and my beautiful boy, they were beautiful. Kindest people you could ever meet.”