Killamarsh deaths: Funeral held for 11-year-old killed during sleepover

·2 min read
Flowers, soft toys and candles are seen at a vigil near to the scene in Chandos Crescent, Killamarsh, near Sheffield, where four people were found dead at a house on Sunday. Picture date: Monday September 20, 2021.
Flowers, soft toys and candles left near where the four people were found dead. (PA)

The funeral of an 11-year-old girl killed with two other children and their mother during a sleepover has taken place.

Connie Gent was killed alongside her best friend Lacey Bennett, 11, her brother, John Paul, 13, and their mum Terri Harris, 35, on 19 September.

Police discovered the bodies at around 7.30 am when they were called to the house in Killamarsh, Derbyshire, following concerns over a man’s safety.

Watch: Killamarsh: 11-year-old victim’s father speaks to ITV News

In a message posted a few weeks ago on Facebook, Connie’s dad, Charlie Gent, confirmed the location of the funeral as Hutcliffe Wood Crematorium in Sheffield.

He said: “All welcome as would like to give me daughter the send-off she deserves,” adding: “Shouldn't even be having to do this.”

Police arrested and charged Damien Bendall, 31, soon after they made the discovery. He is due to stand trial for the murders next year.

Gent previously paid tribute to his daughter, saying: "I can’t believe I’m even having to say this, or these words even cross my lips. The pain is indescribable.

I wake up every morning hoping this has all been a terrible nightmare, but it’s not. It’s the unbearable reality that my little girl has gone.

“Connie was an absolute superstar in every way. She had a gift. If someone was down, she could instantly make them feel OK.

She lit up every room she went in and meant something to everyone she came across, even in hard times. Connie had the ability to keep everyone smiling.”

John Paul and Lacey’s father Jason Bennett said soon after the murders: “Life will never be the same again. Families have been left broken by the awful loss of John, Lacey, Terri and Connie.

“My son John was absolutely my mini-me. Loving, fiery, funny and passionate, with the most beautiful caring heart you could find. Behind his tough exterior he was the most loving son you could wish for. His love for his mum was amazing. He just wanted everyone to be happy.

“Lacey was my TikTok queen, creating dance after dance. Lacey also had another obsession; since Jack Grealish joined Man City she has become totally besotted with him, with a room full of Jack Grealish photos. Man City was her new favourite team.”

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