AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - A 3-year-old girl in suburban Dallas is missing after her father said he punished her for not drinking her milk by telling her to stand outside by herself at night near an alley behind her home, police said on Monday.
Wesley Mathews, 37, has been arrested for suspected child endangerment for the treatment of his daughter, Sherin. He was taken into custody on Saturday after reporting the incident to authorities and has been released on bond, according to police in Richardson, north of Dallas.
Mathews did not immediately respond to a request seeking comment.
“Mathews said he directed his daughter to stand near a large tree at approximately 3 a.m. (on Saturday) because she wouldn’t drink her milk,” an arrest affidavit said.
The father told police he checked on her about 15 minutes later and she was gone, the affidavit said.
About five hours after sending her outside, Mathews called police to report her missing, a police spokesman said.
Mathews told police that he had seen coyotes in the alley near where he told his daughter to stand, the affidavit said.
Sherin was born in India and had been adopted by Mathews’ family. She suffered from malnourishment before arriving in the United States and is on a special diet, said Sergeant Kevin Perlich, a spokesman for the Richardson Police Department.
Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Matthew Lewis