Missing Richardson girl's mom still hopes for safe return

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The mother of the missing child from Richardson spoke for the first time through her attorney since the 3-year-old disappeared.

Sini Mathews is not facing any charges for the disappearance of 3-year-old Sherin, but her husband, Wesley Mathews is charged with child abandonment.

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Attorney Kent Starr met with Sini for about two hours on Wednesday. When he came out of the home, he said his client was distraught and did not offer any more information about what might have happened to the 3-year-old.

“She does not know the whereabouts, and all she wants is for her daughter to be returned,” Starr said.

FBI investigators and Richardson police executed a search warrant Tuesday afternoon to scour for clues that might lead to Sherin, who’s been missing since early Saturday morning after her father told police he was punishing her at 3 a.m. for not drinking her milk by making her stand outside by a tree.

Police say the mother and father are no longer cooperating with the investigation.

Police: Father of missing girl left her outside as punishment because she wouldn't drink her milk

Starr says ethics rules and a potential conflict of interest explain why Sini and her husband have separate attorneys. Wesley had to surrender his passport and was fitted with an ankle monitor as terms of his bond.

“And with regard to why an individual may retain counsel, everybody has a right to legal counsel,” Starr said. “The mere fact that Wesley may be accused of a crime is not indicative of Mrs. Mathews.”

Wesley told police his wife was sleeping when he punished their daughter. Starr says his client and her husband did not harm Sherin and says she shouldn't be judged for not playing a more visible role in the search.

“The mere fact that you do not hear from a person who is mourning — some individuals mourn differently,” her attorney said. “The fact that she may walk up and down the street and react differently to a time of trauma is not indicative of anything.”

Starr says Sini wants both her daughters back — Sherin, her adopted daughter from India, and her biological 4-year-old daughter taken away by CPS.

Police say they continue to search many locations but are staying tight-lipped about the probable cause that allowed them to get the search warrant for the Mathews home and what it revealed.

“We retrieved many items that may have evidentiary value,” said Richardson Police Sgt. Kevin Perlich. “It will take us some time before we can actually get those to a lab and get some analysis done on that.”

FBI agents spent more than six hours executing the search warrant at the Mathews home.

"The longer a person is missing, the more critical it is to find them," Perlich said. "As time goes on, it becomes less and less likely you are going to have a good conclusion to it."

Starr says Sini is still hopeful Sheri will be found.

Wesley's attorney declined to comment on the case.