Street haunted as children and pregnant mum murdered with claw hammer

Killamarsh murders: Damien Bendall arrested in 2021

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Residents in a village where a cold-blooded killer murdered his partner, her two children and another child are rocked by the sickening tragedies.

Many living in Killamarsh, Derbyshire, “don’t want to talk about” Damien Bendall’s evil murders, including the killing of Lacey Bennett and her friend Connie Gent, who were both just 11.

He also murdered Lacey’s 13-year-old brother John Paul Bennett and their 35-year-old Terri Harris mother, who was his then-partner.

Speaking today, one neighbour said: “We didn’t know the family very well, they hadn’t lived here long – we didn’t even know there was children living at the house until one day we saw them having a charity sale and selling teddy bears and things.

“It’s horrendous and I’m just glad it’s over for them.”

Fighting back the tears, another resident told Yorkshire Live: “They hadn’t been here long, it still makes me cry when I think about it. It’s awful, I hope that b****** rots in hell.

“I’m just glad it’s over for them, they appeared like lovely little kids, I saw them selling things for charity once which was so sweet. It’s seemed like a long time coming.”

One dog walker, who lives on the other side of the village and was passing through the nearby park, said: “It’s a real tragedy, I hope something happens to him in prison.”

Another dog walker, Alex, 34, said: “It’s an absolute tragedy, I can’t imagine what was going through his head.

“I don’t live close so didn’t know them but I feel terrible for the family.”

Bendall, 32, was given a whole life order yesterday, meaning he will die in prison.

Derby Crown Court heard police discovered the four bodies at the address in the town on September 19 last year. Each had its skull “smashed in”.

Bendall had raped Lacey as she lay dying.

But after the murders, the monster calmly walked into a shop to buy tobacco and then called police to tell them “I’ve murdered four people.” 

One local newsagents shopkeeper said: “We didn’t know the family, they had only just moved into the village from what people have said. I feel awful for the families and hope he rots in jail.”

Police who tracked Bendall’s movements after the killing discovered he had stolen John’s Xbox games console and exchanged it for drugs after killing the 13-year-old boy. He then told a taxi driver he had had a “mad night”.

Harrowing footage from cameras worn by police officers shows Bendall confessing to murdering four people.

Speaking after the deaths, John and Lacey’s grandmother, Debbie Bennett said: “We are just heartbroken.

“They were beautiful, well-mannered kids.

“Lacey, 11, was a West Ham fan and John a Sheffield Wednesday fan.”

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