Authorities in Texas said Sunday they have discovered the body of a small child while searching for a 3-year-old who has been missing for several weeks, CNN reported.
Sherin Mathews of Richardson, Texas, was reported missing on Oct. 7. She was last seen in the backyard of her family’s home by her adoptive father, Wesley Mathews, CNN reported.
Richardson police said they found the body around 11 a.m. in a culvert beneath a road, according to spokesman Sgt. Kevin Perlich. While a positive identification has yet to be made, Perlich said it was “most likely” Sherin Mathews.
Wesley Mathews told police he left the girl outside the home at 3 a.m. on Oct. 7 as punishment “because she wouldn’t drink her milk,” according to a probable cause document obtained by CNN. He told her to stand by a tree in an alleyway approximately 100 feet from the home, the affidavit said.
At approximately 3:15 a.m., Mathews went to retrieve the child but she was gone, according to the affidavit. He did not contact police for five hours after he realized the child was missing, CNN reported.
Later that evening, Mathews was arrested and charged with abandoning or endangering a child “as a result of his decision to place her outside a place of safety,” the Richardson Police Department said on its verified Facebook page.
Police said he is out on bond.