WESTMINSTER, Calif. — A 32-year-old Southern California woman is accused of drowning her 9-year-old daughter and leaving her body in a bathtub for several days, authorities said.
Khadiyjah Aliyyah Pendergraph, 32, was charged with one felony count of murder Tuesday after she was arrested last week at a grocery store parking lot in Aliso Viejo.
According to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, the girl’s father called police Friday, saying his daughter, 9-year-old Victoria, was missing.
He also requested a welfare check on the girl and Pendergraph after receiving “concerning messages from his ex-wife regarding their daughter,” the DA’s office said.
“When he attempted to pick their daughter up as scheduled on Thanksgiving, the apartment door was locked and no one answered the door,” read a press release from the DA’s office.
Authorities said Victoria used a wheelchair and could not speak. They said Pendergraph left the child in the bathtub for several days while the mother “claims she attempted to commit suicide on more than one occasion.”
The officers who responded to the home forced their way into the Westminster residence and found the dead child alone with obvious signs of trauma, according to Sgt. Edward Esqueda.
“While families across America sat down to Thanksgiving dinner with their loved ones, this little disabled girl’s lifeless body was left to rot in a bathtub after being drowned by her own mother,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. “Words simply do not exist to express the utter heartbreak knowing this little girl could not even scream for help as her mother pushed her underwater and cut her life so tragically and so unnecessarily short.”
If convicted, Pendergraph faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life.
Post source: Abc7chicago