According to local reports and police, a mother of five from West Virginia was beaten to death by her newlywed husband after Thanksgiving.
A criminal complaint filed in Greenbrier County, West Virginia, states that Marrisa Dawson, formerly Marissa Mann-Bennett, “sustained major facial trauma resulting in her death.”
Zachary Hess Dawson, a live-in boyfriend whom she reportedly married just a month earlier, was arrested for questioning and later “informed officers he killed his wife.”
Upon finding Marrisa on the floor at the residence on Maple Avenue in Alderson, West Virginia, a friend by the name of Tyler Truman called 911 around 9 a.m. Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. Marrisa’s vehicle was also missing, according to the caller.
A crime scene team from the Alderson police department responded to the scene. They observed blood throughout the residence both on the second floor and in the basement. It appeared that the victim had been dragged throughout the house, striking her head on several objects.
During the search, bloodied clothes consistent with the victim’s size were found, indicating that the victim’s clothes had been changed. A blue star reagent was used to clean the basement bathroom.
Over the course of time, there appeared to have been a fight that was carried out within the residence.
On US 219 in Lewisburg, law enforcement located Marissa’s gold 2016 Infinity QX80 operated by Dawson.
According to the criminal complaint, a state police corporal who assisted Dawson in his removal and search observed blood on his clothes, necklace, hands, and vehicle side. In addition, Dawson’s phone had GPS that directed him to hotels near the interstate, according to the corporal.
In order to question Dawson, he was taken to the Lewisburg detachment of the West Virginia State Police.
Zachary Hess Dawson admitted his responsibility for Bennett’s death during a post-mirandized interview. Police said Dawson admitted striking Bennett the night before and into the following morning.
“The subject stated he blacked out after striking his wife and when he awoke he knew he had made a mistake. The subject admitted that he changed her clothes to have clean clothes on her,” the complaint continues.
According to WV Metro News, Zach and Marrisa Dawson were married on Oct. 24, a month before the murder. Marrisa had five children, including an infant son born in August.
According to her Facebook page, she worked as a housekeeping attendant at the Greenbrier Resort. According to Greenbrier County Prosecutor Patrick Via, the investigation is still in its infancy, but it will include investigating the suspect’s relationship with the victim.
“A significant amount of blood was found at the scene, along with clothing that investigators gathered,” Via told the outlet.
According to the prosecutor, “Statements sometimes have different interpretations later, so it’s vital that we proceed as if we didn’t have a statement at all.” Among the four agencies involved in the murder investigation are the Alderson Police Department, Lewisburg Police Department, State Police Department, and Greenbrier County Sheriff’s Department.