ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4)– It was 1984 when Connie Bennett found her family murdered in their Aurora home. Connie’s son Bruce, his wife Debra and 7-year-old Melissa were found dead. Three-year-old Vanessa was the only survivor of the brutal attack.

(credit: Bennett family)

“It’s indelible in my mind. It’s really something I will never forget, never,” said Connie Bennett.

Alexander Christopher Ewing appeared in court on Tuesday, 36 years after the family was murdered with a hammer. He’s also accused of murdering Patricia Louis Smith in Lakewood.

Alex Christopher Ewing (credit: CBS)

Ewing has been in prison in Nevada since 1984 for attacking a Las Vegas-area couple after escaping while being transported to Arizona on an attempted murder charge.

Police identified Ewing using DNA found at both murder scenes. Now, he’s back in Colorado and appeared in court where the Bennett family had the chance to testify, nearly four decades after the brutal murder.

Connie Bennett took the stand and told her story, sharing her account of the night prior and the moment she discovered the murders, along with the difficult years following that tragic night. She did it all while Ewing sat across from her in the court room.

“I fell good with the way things went… gotten the chance to say something about it,” said Connie Bennett.

Connie Bennett leaves the court room (credit: CBS)

While she said she was anxious about telling her story in court, it was something she had been preparing for for 36 years, “I have been waiting for this a long time.”

Tuesday’s hearing was continued until later next month at which time the judge will likely decide if there is enough evidence for the case to move forward.

Ewing will have another preliminary hearing later this month in Jefferson County for the hammer attack that killed Patricia Louis Smith in Lakewood that same year.

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