An 18-year-old man was jailed on $5 million bail accused of nearly killing his 7-year-old sister who was found unconscious with a plastic bag over her face.
The ordeal began Wednesday shortly after 1 a.m. when officers were called to a home in Olney along North American Street near Clarkson Avenue. They were met by a woman who said her son, identified by police as Simere Alford, 18, had stolen her car.
The woman said she had gotten home around 10 p.m. Tuesday and saw Alford playing on his phone while her 14-year-old son and her 7-year-old daughter were inside their rooms. She told police she fell asleep but was awoken by Alford shortly before 1 a.m. after he burst into her room, demanded she give him her car keys and water, and then stole her purse. He then left the home and took her car, police said. The woman said Alford was having issues with drugs and had been using K2, a synthetic marijuana.
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While the woman spoke to police, her 14-year-old son noticed that her 7-year-old daughter was not inside her bedroom. They then found the girl unresponsive in the basement with a plastic bag on her face.
"[The woman] then ran out with her 7-year-old daughter in her arms, she was frantic, the child was not breathing," Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small said.
One of the officers administered CPR and the girl was taken to Einstein Medical Center in extremely critical condition. She was then taken to St. Christopher's Hospital and was put on life support.
Investigators found several plastic bags on the floor in the trash-strewn basement, Small said.
Police found the stolen car, which had crashed into a parked car several blocks away, abandoned, investigators said. Alford later showed up at 35th Police District headquarters at 11:20 a.m. Wednesday, according to police.
"Apparently he locked himself in the back of a police car there," SVU Captain Mark Burgmann said. "When officers found him in there he said he did something stupid. They brought him to special victims."
Alford was jailed on $5 million bail, accused of trying to kill his younger sister though police have not yet determined whether he used the plastic bag in an attempt to suffocate her. He is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, theft, receiving stolen property and robbery of a motor vehicle.
As of Thursday afternoon, court records didn't list and an attorney who could comment on Alford's behalf.