A New York man has confessed in court that he beat his 21-month-old daughter to death with a baseball bat earlier this year.
PEOPLE reports Ryan Lawrence, who pleaded guilty in court, will face a life sentence in jail for her murder, with no chance to appeal.
His daughter, Maddox Lawrence, had been diagnosed with eye cancer in her last year, however had recently overcome the disease. Prosecutors suggested that it's possible her father had committed the crime because he was jealous of the attention she'd gotten from the diagnosis.
According to Syracuse.com, Judge Anthony Aloi recounted the allegations in court, and asked Lawrence if they were true. Aloi said that one day in February, Lawrence abducted his daughter while his wife was at work, and took her to a secluded area - Tinker Falls. He described how Lawrence beat Maddox's head in with a baseball bat, then set her body on fire and dumped her remains in Onondaga Creek. Lawrence confessed that all of this was true.
Lawrence reportedly loved his daughter a lot, so it was difficult to find a motive for the case.
However, The Sun reports Onondaga Country District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick said that it was Lawrence's jealousy that caused him to murder his daughter.
"Without going into too much detail, [Ryan Lawrence’s] statements allude to almost a sense of jealousy about the attention that this child was getting, as opposed to the attention that he was getting."
Watch Lawrence's confession here: