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Wounded child’s words: ‘Daddy did it’

Jul 13, 2010 8:52:00 AM - thestate.com

When Wayne Hedgepath opened the door to his daughter Tracy’s home Friday night, he found her and two of his grandchildren dead, and a third clinging to life with a gunshot wound to the head.

“Daddy did it,” the surviving girl, 7-year-old Destiny Minter, can be heard telling her grandfather on a recording of his call to 911.

Court records show her father, Austen Minter, had a history of mental illness and numerous violent episodes with his family over the past few years – including death threats and at least three shooting incidents. Despite more than a dozen arrests and at least one restraining order, the most time Minter appears to have served in jail was about four months.

“Austen Minter has threatened to kill me many times. He stomped me to the ground 2 weeks ago screaming and hitting and kicking ... My 3 and 4 year old child was screaming, ‘Stop daddy, don’t hurt mommy,’ ” Tracy Hedgepath said in an affidavit seeking a domestic violence restraining order in 2008.

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