US News: FedEx driver says he strangled girl, 7, in van after hitting her during delivery
The FedEx driver accused of abducting and killing a seven-year-old girl last week in Texas told authorities that he strangled her after accidentally hitting her with his van while making a delivery at her home, according to an arrest warrant obtained Thursday.
Tanner Lynn Horner, 31, told investigators that Athena Strand wasn’t seriously hurt after he hit her while backing up, but he panicked and put her in his van. He said she was talking to him and told him her name, according the warrant.
But Horner said he didn’t want her to tell her father what happened, so he first tried to break the girl’s neck and when that didn’t work, he strangled her with his hands in the back of the van, the warrant said. The warrant said Horner took investigators to where he’d left Athena’s body.
Athena was found dead on Dec. 2, two days after she was reported missing from the home of her father and stepmother in Paradise, a town of fewer than 500 people about 60 miles (100 kilometers) northwest of Dallas.
Horner was arrested last week on charges of capital murder and aggravated kidnapping and remained jailed Thursday with his bond set at $1.5 million. Jail records did not list an attorney who could speak on his behalf.
Athena’s mother, Maitlyn Gandy, spoke at a news conference Thursday outside Wise County courthouse in Decatur, about 10 miles (16 kilometers) northeast of Paradise. She said said that the package that Horner dropped off that day was a Christmas present for the “amazing little girl” she wanted everyone to know about.
“I was robbed of watching her grow up,” Gandy said as she stood beside the present, a box of “You Can Be Anything” Barbies.
FULL STORY: https://calgaryherald.com/news/world/fedex-driver-accused-in-girls-slaying-dropped-off-her-gift/wcm/737d1142-7e6b-4cd9-997b-ebf12fae378a
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