Father, charged with killing infant daughter, appears in court

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – Marcus Rooks stood before a judge Friday charged with the murder of his 2-month-old infant daughter who police say he threw headfirst into her crib when she wouldn’t stop crying.

The 32-year-old Manchester man had initially been charged with first-degree assault and risk of injury when the child had been in critical condition following the alleged incident April 14. The baby died April 22.

Police said the assault happened at a Capitol Avenue home in Hartford about 1 p.m. when the infant’s mother was at work. According to the arrest affidavit:

Rooks knew the baby was seriously hurt after her head struck a hard part of the cradle but he didn’t call for help for fear of getting arrested. The mother would later call police.

The mother was not in court Friday but the aunt of the child shared the family’s grief.

“I’ll never forget her, never,” said Dannie Sears. “We’re getting through this, trying to finalize everything and put little Adore Marie (Daniels) to rest.”

Rooks has two federal probation violations and a past felony conviction out of Pennsylvania. He was ordered held on $1 million bond and is due back in court June 2.

“I feel that murder charges are sufficient to a murderer,” said Sears.

Josh Scheinblum reporting

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