What to Know
- The bodies of Jeffrey Mancuso and his daughter were found by the girl's stepfather.
- Jeffrey Mancuso had a lengthy criminal record dating back to 2009.
- He was charged with biting a man's ear and throwing a beer bottle at a woman, among other charges.
The man who police said murdered his 7-year-old daughter before killing himself had a long history of violence, including biting off part of a man’s ear and throwing a beer bottle at a woman’s face, court documents showed.
Jeffrey Mancuso, 41, and his daughter, Kayden Mancuso, were found dead Monday morning in his Manayunk home, police said. The two were discovered by the girl’s stepfather after she failed to return to her mother’s house Sunday evening.
Relatives suspected that Kayden Mancuso fell victim to her father’s violent impulses. On their GoFundMe page, the family blamed Philadelphia police and the Bucks County family court system for failing to protect the girl.
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“Kayden's mother trusted that the law and the court system would work for her daughter's best interests. However, the system failed and she was taken too soon,” the page read. "Kayden's mother was told to trust the process, but the door was slammed in her face time after time."
According to a custody order provided by the girl's family, Kayden Mancuso witnessed her father’s violent urges on several occasions. Mancuso yelled at his daughter, verbally fought with her grandmother and harassed her teachers and other school officials. Mancuso’s aggressive behavior prompted Pennsbury School District in Bucks County to issue a certified letter asking the erratic father to "cease and desist all communication with the school."
Kayden Mancuso also witnessed her father punch himself in the face while angry and attack the family dog, according to family court documents.
In May, Bucks County Common Pleas Court Judge Jeffrey G. Trauger granted full custody of the girl to her mother, Kathryn Giglio. Jeffrey Mancusco received visitation rights and a word of warning from the judge.
"The court cautions [Mancuso] to be aware at all times of potential risks that his behavior may have on child’s future emotional and psychological wellbeing," Trauger wrote in his court order.
Philadelphia criminal court records showed that Jeffrey Mancuso’s violent tendencies dated several years back to September 2009 when he threw a beer bottle at a man and the man's wife near 15th and Sansom streets in Center City. Part of the bottle broke off and cut the woman’s face.
Mancuso was charged with a total of eight counts of aggravated assault, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person and possessing an instrument of crime. He pleaded guilty to simple assault in exchange for dropping the other charges. Mancuso was fined and sentenced to a maximum of two years probation.
Then, in 2012, Mancuso was arrested again for punching a man in the face and biting the top of his victim’s ear off during a fight near 2nd and Reed streets. He, again, faced some familiar charges, including recklessly endangering another person, aggravated assault and simple assault. He was found guilty on all counts and sentenced to house arrest with electronic monitoring.
During this time, Mancuso was allowed to drive to work, but had to submit to random alcohol and drug testing and attend anger management counseling.
Five years later, Mancuso received a DUI near the Vine Street Expressway.
The father also violated his probation several times, though court records did not specify the violations.
Neighbors told NBC10 they saw the man and his daughter around but did not think she was in danger.
"I never saw signs of him being violent, nothing like that," Noah Cook said. "That's why this is so shocking."
Even her godfather didn’t think Jeffrey Mancuso could kill his own daughter.
“We never thought the father would go this far,” Matthew Moffett said. “When your child is taken from you in a manner that Kayden was, there is no justice. There is no peace.”
Kayden Mancuso was set to begin the second grade at Edgewood Elementary School in Yardley this fall, school officials said.
A cause of death for Mancuso and his daughter are pending autopsy results, Philadelphia police said.