Teen mounts cameras in Florida home to record father’s alleged abuse

Posted at 12:01 AM, Jan 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-15 00:01:33-05

Warning: Some viewers may find the depictions of alleged abuse in this video and article disturbing.

DESTIN, Fla. (TMW/CNN) – A Florida father faces multiple charges after his 14-year-old daughter installed cameras to record his alleged abuse.

Authorities arrested Damon Richard Becnel, 47, of Destin, a well-known local businessman, after his teen daughter made the recording, The Destin Log reports. Becnel is a managing partner of 26 businesses, including the Sandestin Police Department Inc., records obtained by the paper show.

Police booked Becnel Jan. 2 on one charge of child abuse and one charge of animal abuse, Okaloosa County online records.

The video allegedly shows Becnel threatening and assaulting the girl, as well as one of the dogs.

"I will cut this (expletive) dog’s eyeballs out, I’ll (expletive) do it,” said Becnel, who could be seen pulling out a knife, according to the arrest report.  Later in the video, Becnel hits the dog and holds an object to its throat that investigators said was a knife.

"I'm going to kill the dog," he says as the teen cries, "Stop, please stop."

According to the report, Becnel grabbed his daughter's hair, headbutted her and knocked her head against the wall.

The victim's mother, Allison Tringas, called her daughter "absolutely my hero," and told WEAR the teen has tried for years to get someone to do something about the alleged abuse.

"She is one strong and one smart little girl and I couldn’t be more proud of her," said Tringas, who is divorced from Becnel and doesn't have custody rights.  "I would hate for justice not to be served and the system, again, fail my precious daughter."

Becnel is out on $4,000 bond and expected to appear in court Feb. 4.