The FBI has seized nearly 50 items, including cellphones, laptops, a washer and a dryer, from the home of a 3-year-old Indian girl who disappeared two weeks ago in Richardson city, a case that has caught the attention of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. Sherin Mathews vanished on October 7 after her foster father Wesley Mathews told police he left her outside their home at 3 am as a punishment for not drinking her milk.
“We are deeply concerned about the missing child. Indian Embassy in US is actively involved and they keep me informed,” Swaraj tweeted on Thursday. “We are closely monitoring Sherin Mathews case. We have established the contact with the community and authorities,” the Consul General of India in Houston, Anupam Ray tweeted.
We are deeply concerned about the missing child. Indian Embassy in U.S. is actively involved and they keep me informed. https://t.co/okcLeka67U
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) October 19, 2017
The toddler was adopted by the couple, who are from Kerala, from an NGO in Bihar’s Nalanda last year. While Richardson police are yet to make a breakthrough in the case, FBI detectives have taken DNA swabs, grass, debris and receipts from three vehicles that belong to the Mathews. They also took a flash drive, seat belt and radio equipment from the family’s SUV that went missing for an hour the day Sherin went missing, Fox News reported.
A navigation unit from the SUV was sent to the FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia. “Even if you didn’t plug in an address and say make a right or a left, it’s still recording where you were going. It’s also going to pinpoint where you stopped,” Bree West, a former Dallas County assistant district attorney, said.
West said most of the items collected from the Richardson home were pretty standard. But some items that stood out to her were: a blue string, dark hair-like fibers, vacuum contents, two yellow gloves, dish scrubber inside two grocery bags and the washer and dryer. Investigators are still looking for possible footage of the Acura SUV leaving the home of Sherin, as they try to determine who was driving it.
The authorities have placed Wesley and Sini Mathews’ 4-year-old biological daughter in foster care shortly after Sherin was reported missing. Wesley has since been arrested, and bonded out, on a charge of child endangerment and ordered to wear an ankle monitor during investigation.