Mother Allegedly Murdered 5-Year-Old Daughter In Front Of 8-Year-Old Who Tried To Stop Her

Simone Austin is alleged to have stabbed her 5-year-old daughter, Serenity Harrington, multiple times as her older daughter tried to get her to stop by pulling her hair.

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A Chicago woman allegedly stabbed her young daughter to death while her other daughter looked on, prosecutors said in court this week.

A judge ordered Simone Austin, 27, to be held without bond at the conclusion of a hearing Monday, during which prosecutors detailed the stabbing death of Austin’s 5-year-old daughter, the Associated Press reports. Austin’s 8-year-old daughter told police that her mother first told her to leave the bedroom but then, while looking through a hole in the door, she saw her mother take a serrated knife from under a pillow and attack her sister, Serenity Arrington, slashing her throat and stabbing her multiple times, prosecutors said.

The older sibling tried to stop Austin by screaming and pulling her hair, WBBM reports. The children’s grandfather, who lived in the home in East Garfield Park with Austin and her two girls, came home from getting coffee to find the front door locked, and when he got back into the apartment using the kitchen door, the 8-year-old told him that “mommy killed her little sister,” prosecutors said.

Simone Austin Ap

Following the stabbing, Austin is alleged to have carried Serenity out onto the street, put her on the ground, and laid down next to her until first responders arrived, according to the Associated Press. The child was taken to a local hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries.

Austin is alleged to have admitted to officers and first responders who arrived on the scene that she killed her daughter and that she was sorry, according to WBBM.

Police took Austin into custody outside the home at around 9:30 a.m., the Chicago Tribune reports. The child’s death has been ruled a homicide.

Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy said Monday that Austin’s 8-year-old daughter told authorities that she was worried something would happen after her mother previously walked around the house with a knife in her hand after the daughter spilled eggs on the ground, according to the Tribune. The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services also confirmed that their agency has had previous interactions with Austin’s family; they didn't elaborate on the circumstances of those interactions but did confirm that they are investigating the recent incident, according to the paper.

“Keep that child in your thoughts and prayers because obviously this will be extremely difficult for the rest of her life,” Brendan Deenihan, Chicago Police's chief of detectives, said in reference to the victim’s sister, WMMB reports.

Austin is scheduled to next appear in court on Oct. 19, online jail records show.

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