Frisco mother charged with murder of 10-year-old son

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by MARJORIE OWENS

WFAA

Posted on January 30, 2014 at 9:40 AM

Updated Thursday, Jan 30 at 6:23 PM

Child found dead inside Frisco home

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FRISCO — Police say the mother of a 10-year-old boy found dead in their suburban home admitted to killing him before officers discovered his body in a bathtub.

Arnav Dhawan, 10, was found dead in the home where he lived with his mother and father in the 1500 block of Mountain View Lane, said Frisco police spokesman Brad Merritt. 

According to a statement released by the Frisco Police Department, officers were called at about 6:32 p.m. to the home in the Hunters Creek neighborhood.

Merritt said the boy’s father, Sumeet Dhawan, returned home from an out-of-state business trip and learned through his email that his son had not attended school for a few days. His wife was out running errands and the father realized he couldn’t locate his son.

Upon arriving at the scene, police spoke with the father as his wife, Pallavi Dhawan, 38, arrived home. She asked to speak with Sumeet in private and officers allowed them to. Meritt said Sumeet became upset and pointed to the bedroom door. 

Officers then asked Pallavi if the son was inside and she nodded her head “yes,” Merritt said. When asked if the boy was dead, Pallavi again nodded affirmatively, the officer said. 

Arnav was unconscious in the bathtub, wrapped in a towel “like a shroud,” Merritt said. Empty plastic bags were located near him, although the spokesman was unsure if they were on the boy’s body or floating near him.  There were no weapons found at the scene nor was there any sign of a struggle, Merritt said. 

The medical examiner performed an autopsy Thursday morning and a cause of death is pending. Pallavi Dhawan has been charged with murder and is in the Frisco City Jail. After her arraignment, she will be taken to the Collin County Jail. She is cooperating with investigators. 

"It's very unsettling," said Steve Buckley, a neighbor.

Buckley said he didn't know the Dhawan family but had seen a man who lived at the residence with two boys at the pool.

"They kept to themselves, had nothing to do with anybody as far as I know," he said.

Melanie Keel, another resident in the neighborhood, said the family moved to the neighborhood sometime in the fall.

Serita Dodson, the principal of Isbell Elementary in Frisco, sent a letter to parents Thursday morning that reported the death of an unnamed fifth grade student.

"Our deepest sympathies go out to the family," Dodson wrote. "Due to privacy concerns and respect for the family we are not releasing the name at this time."

Dodson said the school would have counselors on campus to talk with distressed students.

Merritt called the incident isolated and said there was no threat to the community. He said he held a media briefing to quash any rumors or concern that any residents would be in danger. 

“It’s not normal for the citizens of Frisco, that’s another reason we’re doing this … to quell any fears or rumors,” he said. “This isn’t normal for Frisco or any other suburban community.” 

 

WFAA's Rebecca Lopez, Brian Glenn and Marcus Moore contributed to this report

Principal Dodson's Letter to Parents

 

 

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