Irving mom faces arraignment on capital murder charge

Print
Email
|

by REBECCA LOPEZ

Bio | Email | Follow: @rlopezwfaa

WFAA

Posted on July 20, 2010 at 5:30 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jul 20 at 9:54 PM

Children attacked

View larger map

IRVING — Irving police said Saiqa Akhter will be arraigned on capital murder charges Wednesday morning in connection with Monday's assault on her two children that left one of them dead and another clinging to life.

Investigators said Akhter, 30, called 911 around 5 p.m. Monday telling police she had done something terrible to her five-year-old son and his two-year-old sister.

According to a search warrant and arrest affidavit, officers arrived to find the children in a bedroom; both were blue and not breathing.

Akhter was exiting their apartment at the Wind Tree complex but was taken into custody immediately.

Child Protective Services is now involved in the case. In May 2009, someone called the agency to complain that the Akhter's son Zain had been left alone.

"The parents admitted that they had left their older child home sleeping while they took the little girl to the emergency room for some severe respiratory problems," said CPS spokeswoman Marissa Gonzales.

CPS said they worked with the family for two months, getting them help. Case workers saw no reason to continue visits since there were no physical signs of abuse.

"We definitely went to start out the investigation, talked to the parents," Gonzales said. "They were adamant that it would not happen again, and that they knew it was dangerous to leave a child so young home alone, but that they had been so scared for their toddler that they just hadn't been thinking clearly."

The biggest question now is, why did this happen? Saiqa Akhter didn't show any apparent signs that something was wrong.

"There was absolutely no concern about physical abuse at the time," Gonzales said about the agency's 2009 investigation. "The children were in good condition aside from their medical issues, and the home was neat and tidy. No one that we spoke to had any concerns about the parents caring for their children. It had only been that one incident."

The children's uncle, Wasimul Haque, told The Dallas Morning News that the Akhter's son was autistic, and the mother was depressed. He said she also didn't like the one-bedroom apartment that the family had recently moved into.

"Since last one month, she was totally not herself," Haque said. "She was not mentally present and she was somewhere, her mind was somewhere."

Two-year-old Faryaal Akhter remained in critical condition at Children's Medical Center Dallas on Tuesday.

There is a word used for type of crime: filicide. Sadly, Texas has had some of the most notorious and most publicized cases.

Daisja Weaver was killed last June. Police said her parents were both involved in her murder. The infant's body was never recovered from Lewisville Lake, where her parents said they had dumped her.

Andrea Yates remains in prison, convicted of killing her five children in 2001.

On average, about 48 children are killed by their parents each year.

E-mail rlopez@wfaa.com

Print
Email
|