Mother of child found dead accused of leaving her home alone

This photo provided by the Richardson, Texas, Police Department, shows Sini Ann Mathews, who was arrested Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017, after surrendering to police. Mathews, the mother of Sherin Mathews, a 3-year-old who was adopted from India whose body was recovered last month from a drainage culvert weeks after she was reported missing, was charged with child abandonment after police allege that she left her home alone. (Richardson Police Department via AP)

DALLAS (AP/WKRC) - The mother of a girl who was adopted from India and found dead last month in a suburban Dallas storm drain has been charged with child abandonment after police allege that she left her home alone.

Richardson police say Sini Mathews turned herself in Thursday. Her bond was set at $250,000.

Police say 3-year-old Sherin Mathews was left home alone for 1½ hours the night of Oct. 6 while her family went to dinner and was still there when they returned. Police say they didn't take her with them after she refused to drink milk.

Wesley Mathews, the 37-year-old father, remains jailed on a felony injury to a child charge. Bond was set at $1 million, Richardson police Sgt. Kevin Perlich said. Authorities say he initially told investigators that Sherin disappeared before dawn on Oct. 7 after he made her stand outside as punishment for not drinking her milk. They say he later changed his story and said she choked to death on milk and that he got rid of her body in the storm drain not far from their home. Authorities said he waited five hours to report her missing.

Wesley Mathews told police that after doing an initial search once he realized his daughter was missing, he went inside and did laundry while waiting for her to come home or for daylight so that he could continue looking.

In a statement, attorney Mitch Nolte confirmed that he escorted Sini Mathews to the police department but didn't comment on the case against her.

The family of Sherin Mathews issued a statement saying she was buried Oct. 31 as part of a private ceremony.

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