LOCKPORT – A grand jury will investigate charges against a Lockport man accused of trying to kill his girlfriend’s 7-year-old daughter on Dec. 31.
David L. Alfonso, 28, of Monroe Street, has been charged with attempted second-degree murder, second-degree strangulation and second-degree assault and is currently being held on $1 million bail in the Niagara County Jail. Following a hearing Monday, which included a description of the child’s injuries and testimony from a witness who described the girl’s frantic calls for help, City Court Judge William Watson said the prosecution met the burden of proof needed to prove there was at least one felony and agreed to move the case to a grand jury in Niagara County Court.
Medical records, photos of the girl and her statements also were entered into evidence as part of the prosecution’s case, being led by Deputy District Attorney Holly Sloma. Alfonso was represented by Public Defender Edward Zubulske.
Danielle Rubin, testifying for the prosecution, said she lived in a lower apartment on Church Street, one floor below an apartment occupied by the little girl’s grandmother.
She said that she and the grandmother had just had breakfast with the child and had dropped her at her home on Monroe Street around 2 p.m. to take a shower, get some clothes and her favorite pillow.
The girl was expected to return to her grandmother’s house later that day, but Rubin said the girl returned much sooner.
“It was not more than five minutes. She was banging on my door,” Rubin said, describing the knocking as frantic. “When I opened the door she came barreling through. She was terrified. I’ve never seen a child more terrified in my life. She had no shoes, no jacket and her jaw was covered in blood.”
“She kept saying, ‘David’s trying to kill me. David’s trying to kill me,’ ” Rubin said .
According to police, the girl’s mother told them Alfonso had been trying to kill her daughter. Police responding found the mother at an intersection near the Monroe street house. She was holding a butcher knife, which she said she had used to stab Alfonso to try and get him to stop. The mother was disarmed by Chief of Police Lawrence Eggert, but was not charged.
Alfonso was found bloody and was described as aggressive and hostile by police before he was taken into custody by force. He was treated and then released to police custody.
The little girl was treated in Women & Children’s Hospital for injuries to her jaw, tongue and palate. She lost at least one baby tooth in the attack, according to Detective Lt. Scott D. Seekins.
He said Monday that the girl was released from the hospital late last week and is now home and in the custody of her mother.
Seekins said police are investigating claims that Alfonso was under the influence of drugs when the attack occurred, and that investigators have been speaking to both family members and to informants in the neighborhood.
He said Alfonso is well-known to police.“He’s had at least four arrests in 2012, in addition to these charges,” Seekins said.