Moments after posting a photo of himself with his baby daughter online, a disturbed dad made good on a Facebook threat and killed the toddler with a bullet to her head. He then shot himself.
In the uploaded photo, Merrick McKoy, 22, made an exaggerated face as he held the helpless child in his arms for one last, haunting father-daughter portrait.
"Don't judge me had no choice," he wrote in his final Facebook post before carrying out his fiendish plan, the New York Daily News reported.
The chilling crime unfolded when the 19-month-old girl's mother woke up on Monday morning to see her estranged husband standing over her head with a handgun, Colorado police said.
Ms Kimphone "Kim" Phanthavongsa, 21, fought with him and ran out to a neighbour's apartment before calling the police.
When officers rushed to the scene, they found the child and the man with gunshot wounds, Denver TV station 7News reported.
Both were rushed to hospital, but baby Mia McKoy- Phanthavongsa did not survive. McKoy is in critical condition.
The mother was "hysterical" when she learned of her daughter's fate, a police spokesman said. "We're trying to be very respectful of the fact that she tragically lost her child," investigator Cheri Spottke said, calling the incident "particularly heinous".
"She (Mia) just learnt how to walk," said neighbour Vannatda Sivixai.
Police said McKoy had a restraining order prohibiting him from being at the apartment.
Another neighbour who lives in the same complex said McKoy was apparently angry that his wife broke up with him. She claimed Ms Phanthavongsa said that McKoy had threatened her.
Ms Phanthavongsa's family members said the child's grandmother was planning to take Mia and her mother to her native Laos after Christmas to visit other relatives.
They said she was ready to move on with her life, but McCoy would not let go.
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