A doctor testified he notified Child Protective Services in March that Sherin Mathews, the three-year-old Texas girl found dead after her father punished her for not drinking her milk, showed physical signs of abuse.
Fox reports the doctor found Sherin had bone fractures consistent with abuse.
The testimony came about the same time the commissioner of Child Protective Services told WFAA his agency failed the girl.
“I think they could have done a better job, a much better job,” said Hank Whitman, commissioner of the Texas Department of Public Safety. “It’s sad when I saw that, and I read the case report. I was silent for 10 seconds, and looking at my staff, it’s not acceptable. It’s not acceptable. We are well-trained people. How this slipped through? We’re going to find out”
The testimony from Dr. Suzanne Dakil came during a custody hearing for the girl who is now in the care of relatives.
The father Wesley Mathews originally told police he punished the girl for not drinking her milk by sending her alone overnight outside. He would later report the girl missing. Her body was found two weeks later. However, Mathews has since changed his story saying he physically assisted the girl to drink her milk after she at first refused. He said Sherin began choking. He thought she had died because he could not feel her pulse, and told police he removed the girl’s body from the house.
Both parents, Wesley and Sini Mathews, face charges in connection to the adopted girl’s death.
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