families pay tribute to woman and children killed in Killamarsh | UK News
Families have paid tribute to a woman and three children killed at a house near Sheffield, as an investigation into their deaths continues.
The bodies of John Paul Bennett, 13, Lacey Bennett, 11, their mother Terri Harris, 35, and Lacey’s friend Connie Gent, 11, were found in a house in Killamarsh, in Derbyshire on September 19.
Damien Bendall, 31, of Killamarsh, is due on trial next year for the murders of Harris and the three children. He is expected to appear in court again in November.
Specially trained officers continue to work with family members of the deceased, who paid tribute to their loved ones on Thursday.
Jason Bennett, father of John Paul and Lacey, said: “Life will never be the same again. Families have been shattered by the terrible loss of John, Lacey, Terri and Connie.
“My son John was absolutely my mini me. Loving, fiery, funny and passionate, with the most beautiful, benevolent heart you can find. Behind his harsh exterior, he was the most loving son you could wish for. His love for his mother was incredible. He just wanted everyone to be happy.
“Lacey was my TikTok Queen, creating dance after dance. Lacey had another obsession too; ever since Jack Grealish joined Man City, she’s gone totally mad about him, with a room full of photos of Jack Grealish. Man City was her. new favorite team.
Connie’s mother Kerry Shelton said: “Anyone who knows Connie knows how special she is. Connie had an amazing imagination and was always ready to put on a show, especially at Christmas when she was writing plays to play with her brothers and sister. On birthdays, Halloween, or any occasion, Connie would take care of the organization, the crafting, or the baking. She always made things so special.
Connie’s dad, Charles Gent, added: “I can’t believe I even have to say this, or that those words are even crossing my lips. The pain is indescribable. I wake up every morning hoping this has been a terrible nightmare, but it isn’t. It is the unbearable reality that my little girl is gone.
“Connie was an absolute superstar in every way. She had a knack. If someone was down she could instantly make them feel good. She lit up every room she entered and meant something to everyone she walked in. ‘she would meet, even in difficult times. Connie had the ability to keep everyone smiling.
In a joint statement, Harris’ parents Angela Smith and Lawrence Harris said: “[Terri] made many friends throughout his short life and has remained loyal to all of them. She was an extraordinary mother; her babies were her world.
“Terri went out of her way not only for her family and friends, but also for anyone who needed her help. She absolutely loved her job as a caregiver and would go out of her way for the people she cared for. “
They added, “She was her mother’s rock throughout her illnesses and was absolutely idolized by all of her grandparents. Terri idolized them in return.
A spokesperson for Derbyshire Police said the provisional cause of death for the four victims had been identified as “blunt trauma”.
The full findings of the pathologists’ reports will be made available for inquiries into the four deaths, which are expected to take place next year after the conclusion of criminal proceedings against Bendall.