Sole survivor of 1984 Aurora hammer attack testifies on opening day of murder trial

Local News

ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) – It was an emotional day at the Arapahoe County Courthouse as the murder trial of Alex Ewing got underway.

Ewing is accused of attacking the Bennett family inside their Aurora home with a hammer back in 1984.

Seven-year-old Melissa Bennett was violently raped and killed. Her parents, Bruce and Deborah Bennett, were also killed. The 3-year-old sister, Vanessa, was the only survivor.

In opening statements, prosecutors told the jury that decades after this crime, investigators received a lead that led them to Alex Ewing. A DNA swab linked him to the crime.

But defense attorneys say that there is no way that one person could have committed these crimes, and that there was other DNA found at the scene.

The first witness called to the stand was Connie Bennett, Bruce Bennett’s mother. She was the person who found the family after they were attacked. She was very emotional as she described that day to the jury.

Vanessa Bennett, who is now 41 years old, also testified. She told jurors she does not remember the attack on her family.

She told the jury her injuries included a bashed skull, and broken jaw.

She and her grandmother sat in court and listened as first responders were called to the stand and testified about the horrifying things they saw in the house that day.

The trial is expected to last until mid-August.

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