The Plano Police Department served an arrest warrant for 29-year-old Bakari Abiona Moncrief. He was charged with capital murder in connection to the death of 43-year-old Sarmistha Sen.
Sen left her home on Aug. 1 for her normal run along the Chisholm Trail in Plano, a suburb about 20 miles north of Dallas. Her body was found later that day in Spring Creek near Legacy Drive and Marchman Way.
Police responded to calls about an unresponsive woman lying in the creek, and she was pronounced dead at the scene, Dallas Morning News reported.
Investigators believe Moncrief attacked the woman and dragged her about “135 feet to the creek under Legacy Drive where she would not likely be found.” She likely died of blunt force trauma and the alleged undisclosed murder weapons were found at the scene, according to the arrest affidavit.
“She was brutally killed by a stranger for no apparent reason,” a Caring Bridge website page set up in San’s honor said.
In a journal entry on the site, San’s husband of 16 years, Arindam Roy, said his wife “was just at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
“If she left the house 5 minutes earlier or later, we would probably not be in this situation,” Roy wrote. “My entire focus is to figure out how to raise two boys while being both father and mother. The hardest part – With the covid situation, I cannot get a hug from anybody. I could really use one right now.”
Moncrief was first taken into custody that same day at a nearby gas station on 2200 block of Legacy Drive. He was linked to a robbery at a home in the 3400 block of Michael Drive in Plano. Both the gas station and the home are not far from the trail where San was found.
Ring Doorbell camera video placed Moncrief at the home and his DNA was found on sweaty handprints left on a TV inside. DNA testing later revealed that Sen’s blood was also present on Moncrief’s clothing.
He is being held at the Collin County Detention Center in McKinney, Texas. His bail is set at $10 million for the murder charge and $1 million for the burglary charge, Dallas Morning News reported.
Sen was born in India but came to the United States to continue her cancer research at the University of Texas at Dallas and at the University of Birmingham in Alabama. She got married in 2004 and moved to Plano that same year. The couple shares two sons, ages 12 and 6.