A Montgomery County, TX woman slashed her five-year-old son’s throat to “release demons from his body”. Montgomery County officials charged Daphne Octavia Spurlock, the mother, with attempted capital murder and is holding her without bond.
The slashing did not occur immediately. At first, Michael Spurlock had been stomped on by his mother.
When the boy's father arrived home from work, he discovered that Michael was injured. Shortly after midnight, he called Magnolia police. Authorities believe that while the father was outside telephoning police, Mrs. Spurlock slashed the boy's throat. When police arrived, they found Michael in a pool of blood.
Daphne Spurlock was reportedly obsessed with religion. It was because of this obsession that she told police that demons infested her son’s body and she had tried to get the demons out him.
The youngster is in critical condition, struggling for his life.
Neighbors were shocked about what happened to the boy and the mother’s arrest.
"She was smiling every day, she was the same. She went to church all the time," said Nolan O’Neil. "Never expected nothing like that."
O’Neil described Michael as a good little boy who loves animals.
"He always comes over to see the animals. My granddaughter would bring him over to see them. He’d come over every chance he’d get," O’Neil said. "He seemed real nice little kid, talked real nice, ‘Yes sir, no sir.’"
The boy’s brother, Jeff Boutthatmoney Spurlock, wrote a statement on his Facebook page, saying, "She tried to kill my brother, what kind of mama is that?"
Daphne Spurlock’s Facebook page contains a picture Jesus on the cross and scriptures.
Spurlock’s brother, Lee Gresham, described her as a good mother to her five children (the son that she slashed is the youngest of the five).
"She loved people, especially children," Gresham said. "She has four other children she raised, and they’re grown. No problems with that."
However, in recent years, that changed and her marriage was troubled. Her housekeeping habits changed.
"It was in disarray. It was scary because my sister is not like that," Gresham said. "She’s clean."
She also became obsessed with religion, talking about little else.
"I just didn’t see her as a normal person any more. Something had influenced her," said Lee Gresham, her brother.
Gresham and others believe Spurlock’s church, Magnolia Apostolic Tabernacle, may be to blame.
"She always had a faith in God and believed in that," Lee Gresham said. "She just got in kind of way deep at this place she’s in now. She got beyond what I’ve ever seen."
According to her daughter, Channterra, the church told her mother that she had the power to cast out demons and Spurlock’s brother, Gresham said that she always believed in God, but was never this deep into it. The minister, a Pentecostal preacher, stated that he is not ready to make a statement because his congregation is still healing from this incident.
"My mom said the church told her she had the power to cast demons out of people and she started speaking tongues like that," said Channterra Gresham, Spurlock’s daughter.
Police say Spurlock told them she was trying to cast demons out of her child so she stomped on his chest and stabbed him with a large kitchen knife.
"Once she stomped the demons, it was not helping. She further took a knife and slit his throat," said Brian Clack with the Magnolia Police Department.
Others say she never abused her children until now.
"She never abused my little brother at all," said Channterra. "Never. She never even had a sign of trying to whoop him."
Family and friends believe Spurlock had a mental breakdown.
"She loved that child," said Lee Gresham said."For her to talk that stuff she was talking about, she was told to sacrifice him, I know that’s out on the deep end. That’s not normal for any human being. She had some issues. I’m looking into them. We’re looking into them."
"That’s not her character," agreed Mary Smith, a close family friend. "The whole 20 years I’ve been knowing Daphne, she put her children first, her children before everything."
Child Protective Services (CPS), who has custody of the child, stated he is recovering, but still minimally responsive. Tuesday, a judge ordered a family member to stay by the child’s bedside, at all times, during his stay in the hospital.
The pastor of Magnolia Apostolic Tabernacle finally made a written statement.
We, as a church family, stand today just like many in our community that have known this family, shaken and deeply saddened. The recent behavior of Daphne is out of character for what we have known of her in the past years that she has attended our church. Daphne has always been kind, one to have an encouraging word, and those in our local congregation have never known her to be anything but loving toward Michael. We know Michael as a respectful and fun loving boy, always smiling and happy. Our hearts are troubled by this tragedy.
He closed the statement saying his congregation prays for Michael, his mother, and the whole family. His church will continue to serve the community just as they have for the last 34 years, with love and compassion.