Oct. 23 (UPI) -- Police said they believe a body found Sunday is that of a 3-year-old Texas girl who had been missing for weeks.
Sherin Mathews of Richardson, Texas, had been missing since Oct. 7 when her father said he told her to go stand outside in an alley at 3 a.m. as punishment for not drinking her milk. The Richardson Police Department found the body of a child Sunday morning in a drain underneath a road less than a mile from Sherin's home.
A positive identification of the body has not been made but police said they believe it's Sherin.
The cause of death has not been released and no arrest has been made.
Sherin's adoptive father, Wesley Mathews, was charged with abandoning or endangering a child after he told police he told her to go stand outside in an alleyway in the late hours of the night. He was arrested for the charges but released on bail. He is required to wear an ankle monitoring device and has surrendered his passport, reported the Dallas Morning News.
Mathews told police he checked on Sherin 15 minutes after he sent her outside and saw that she was missing. Instead of looking for her, he said he went back inside to do laundry and wait until it got lighter to look for her or until she came back on her own.
Police weren't alerted about Sherin being missing until five hours later.
"Why was the last sighting at 3 a.m. and the parents not call us until after 8 a.m.? That's the question we want answered," Sgt. Kevin Perlich told KXAS-TV. "As far as why she was out there, how long she was out there, that's the questions we have for the parents."
Five days after Sherin went missing, Richardson police announced they had evidence that a vehicle owned by the Mathews' left the home at about 4 a.m. for an hour before returning.