| Crime |

Prosecutors Indict Oak Cliff Mom For Allegedly Drowning Her Infant Son

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On the afternoon of September 6, police officers came to the door of an apartment in the 4300 block of Wyoming Street. They were following a man who lived there, who had just received a disturbing call: his one-year-old child was dead.

The police were met at the door by a woman who was crying and screaming into her cellphone, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, my baby." Her clothes were sopping wet and stained with blood. On the bed behind her lay an infant child, a boy; both the bed and the baby's body were also soaking wet. EMTs immediately performed CPR, but it was too late. The baby was already dead.

The woman was 25-year-old Chloe Menager, arrested in early September in the drowning of her son, Elijahu Perez. Court records show that Menager has now been formally indicted in the killing, charged with the capital murder of a child under ten years old.

The police report from that afternoon has also been released. After Menager's arrest, it says, she was taken to police headquarters, where she waived her rights. She then admitted to holding the child's head under the water in the bathtub.

"She also admitted she thought about killing herself and taking [Perez] with her," the report says.

In jailhouse interviews with both WFAA and the Dallas Morning News, Menager spoke of having "demons" inside her or tormenting her. She also told the Morning News that she had tried to kill herself by slashing her wrist before phoning her husband, the baby's father. She did not admit to the drowning in either of the media interviews, saying instead, "I don't recall" or "I don't really want to say." She also said she didn't think she'd told police she killed her son.

Menager is a native of France; the French consulate was notified of her arrest.

With her husband, Menager had been attending a small Messianic Jewish Church in Oak Cliff, Am-Segulah Linaje Escogido. (The name is a mixture of Hebrew and Spanish, meaning, roughly, "Treasured Nation Chosen Lineage.") She compared her troubles to the Biblical figures of Job and David, according to the Morning News.

"This is my trial and I have to go through this," she said. "But I really don't want people to blame it on religion. I know it sounds crazy to a nonreligious person." She also said that she was a "good mother."

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