Former Phoenix police detective facing murder charges following death of 7-year-old daughter

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(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

A former Phoenix police detective and his wife are now facing child abuse and murder charges.

A grand jury just indicted Germayne and Lisa Cunningham in connection with the death of his 7-year-old daughter.

Germayne had been with the Phoenix Police Department for 12 years until he resigned in September.

Back in February, Sanaa Cunningham was rushed to an urgent care center with trouble breathing and bruises, and scratches all over her body, according to police records.

The child later died.

Dad and step-mom reportedly told authorities that Sanaa had a history of mental and physical illness, and was diagnosed with schizophrenia.

They also said she would frequently injure herself.

But investigators with the Goodyear Police Department were not convinced and launched an investigation on Feb. 12. The 10-month "extensive investigation" led to the couple being indicted on 10 counts of child abuse and one count of first-degree murder.

Police records indicate that Sanaa had been abused for a long time.

The little girl had reportedly been zip-tied to a large water container in the garage and locked in a laundry room on a regular basis.

The child was often left on the patio for hours and had been spotted naked in a pile of trash, according to police.

Germayne and Lisa Cunningham, 38 and 43 respectively, have not been taken into custody yet, but are expected to appear in court later this month, when a judge will determine whether they should be released on bond. 

A GoFundMe page had been set up following the child's death to raise money for the family. More than $8,000 has been raised so far.

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Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

Click to learn more about Jason.

Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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