Houston : The tragic death of 3-year-old Indian girl Sherin Mathews may lead to a new law in the US state of Texas which would make it a felony to leave a child alone at home, a media report quoted activists as saying.
Sherin was found dead in a culvert in Richardson city in suburban Dallas on October 22, over two weeks after she was reported missing by her Indian-American foster father, Wesley Mathews. The proposed ‘Sherin’s Law’ would make it a felony to leave a child at home alone, WFAA television station reported.
Richardson Police has said that Wesley had told investigators that he, his wife Sini and their biological daughter went out for dinner on October 6, the night prior to Sherin’s disappearance, leaving the toddler alone at home.
Wesley first told cops he made Sherin stand next to a tree at 3 am outside their home as punishment for not drinking her milk. After Sherin’s body was found, he changed his story to say the girl choked to death while drinking milk.
“With Sherin, we draw the line. It’s enough. It’s time to make a change,” said Reena Bana, an advocate for missing or abused children and domestic issues. It is a change they would hope to title “Sherin’s Law.” “No children under 9 or 10 years old need to be left unaccompanied at home,” said Shanna Poteet, an activist and advocate was quoted as telling the channel. Attorney Bilal Khaleeq, who practices family and criminal law, has been helping Bana and Poteet make changes in the Texas state laws. The group’s hope is to also push for reform to Child Protective Services in Texas, where the crime has occurred.