RICHARDSON, Texas (KXAN) — The day after Sherin Matthews’ body was found in a culvert near her Richardson home, her adopted father told police Monday the little girl’s death was caused by choking on milk, according to an arrest affidavit.
KXAS reports Wesley Matthews and his attorney went to the Richardson Police Department and asked to speak to detectives. Matthews told police he had been trying to get his 3-year-old daughter to drink milk but she kept refusing. Eventually, Sherin began to drink the milk and he said he “physically assisted” the girl in drinking the milk while they were in the garage.
That’s when the child began to choke, according to the affidavit. The father told police she was “coughing and her breathing slowed.” A short time later, Matthews said he “no longer felt a pulse.” Matthews admitted to police he removed the body from the home after she died, continued the affidavit.
The family reported Sherin missing on Saturday, Oct. 7 around 8 a.m. At the time, the father told authorities he forced his daughter to stand outside the house at 3 a.m. to discipline her for not eating. According to the affidavit, Matthews also said “he knew coyotes had been seen in the alley where he left his daughter.”
After weeks of searching with drones and K-9, authorities found Sherin’s body on Sunday, Oct. 22 in a culvert. Richardson police confirmed the body’s identity Tuesday morning. Authorities are still waiting on her official autopsy results.
Matthews is currently in jail charged with injury to a child. The day the child was reported missing, Matthews was also arrested and charged with abandoning or endangering a child.
KXAS reports the toddler had “developmental issues and has limited verbal communication skills.” The Mathews family adopted the girl two years ago at an orphanage in India.