Authorities have arrested a Florida man accused of putting on a werewolf mask as he filmed his repeated and systematic torture of a two-year-old girl.
37-year-old Andrew Bennett Ross-Celaius, who was dating the victim’s mother at the time of the abuse, was arrested by the Escambia County Sheriff’s Department on suspicion of aggravated child abuse, child abuse and possession of a controlled substance.
Police first became aware of Ross-Celaius when the girl’s mother brought her to the hospital for what she thought was ringworm.
When hospital staff realized the marks on the girl were due to abuse, authorities were alerted. Police recovered footage from multiple surveillance cameras after searching the victim’s home. Videos were also found on Ross-Celaius’ phone.
Investigators say the videos show the suspecting shooting the sleeping two-year-old with an airsoft gun, burning her with a lighter and shocking her with a dog collar.
A man filmed himself wearing a werewolf mask to burn, shoot, and 'torture' a 2-year-old girl while she slept, authorities said https://t.co/D13sbuJEv4— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) May 4, 2019
So far police say they have discovered video of abuse going back two months, though they are still reviewing footage kept by the suspect.
“It’s the stuff that nightmares are made of,” Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan said at a news conference Wednesday. “No child should ever be subjected to this.”
“There are videos of the child sound asleep and then getting a full bottle thrown on this child, just to wake it up,” said Chief Deputy Chip Simmons. “One of the more disturbing videos shows the child actually wearing a dog collar, and you can hear the sound of the dog collar being activated.”
“I’ve been in law enforcement for over 30 years and when I looked at the evidence that we saw here, me and a number of my staff were speechless,” added Simmons.
Those reacting to the story have been equally disturbed by the descriptions of the abuse.
I just can't understand why anyone would DO THIS??— KS (@Schroeder8K) May 5, 2019
Wtf is wrong with this guy???— Shannon yarbor (@ShannonYarbor) May 4, 2019
“A Florida man...”— Walt Stephenson (@walt_stephenson) May 4, 2019
What's wrong with people in Florida ?— Number6 (@6_number6) May 5, 2019
Honestly, what are they drinking in Florida? What a nightmare.— DebDeb (@DebRMT) May 5, 2019
Wow, I just don't know that to say.— Ladybug 53.5 (@ladybugdink) May 5, 2019
Police arrested another suspect, Eric Furnans, on suspicion of destroying evidence. After his arrest, Ross-Celaius allegedly contacted Furnans and asked him to destroy additional video evidence of the abuse.
The girl’s mother was also arrested on suspicion of neglect, but was later released after investigators determined she had no knowledge of the abuse.
Sheriff Morgan could not confirm if the girl was sexually abused but expects additional charges will follow, as they continue to review video collected during seven search warrants related to the investigation.
As far as the public is concerned, though, the current charges are more than enough to justify locking him up and throw away the entire jail.
Electric chair. Right now— Jorell (@jorelldeleon) May 4, 2019
Death Penalty in Florida 🙌🏻— Jy Findloy (@fuckets_of_rain) May 4, 2019
Jeezus...I’m going to crawl into my sons bed and just cradle him seeing this BS. Dude doesn’t deserve death...it’s too quick.— Smitty216 (@SmittyO216) May 5, 2019
I'm sorry but I hope he gets what he deserves while in prison.— Incognito (@Nile_Wanderer) May 4, 2019
Put him in general population.— Goldfishy (@Gold__Fishy) May 5, 2019