PLANO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Plano Police Detectives have executed an arrest warrant on 29-year-old Bakari Abiona Moncrief, 29, in connection to the slaying of Plano mother Sarmistha Sen.
The body of Sarmistha Sen was found earlier this month near a creek at Legacy Drive and Marchman Way.
“It just hit me so hard because my mother, aunt, myself walked these trails for years. I grew up here and it could have been one of us,” neighbor Marlo Malmis-Brown told CBS 11 News at the time. “She was a member of the community, she was a neighbor, she loved this trail and we all love this area so much.”
Police in Plano initially focused their investigation into her death on Moncrief after surveillance video captured him trying to break into a home on a street near the trail where Sarmistha was killed. Moncrief was arrested and charged with burglary at the time.
But a newly released arrest warrant reveals Moncrief attacked Sarmistha on the nearby trail with a deadly weapon.
Detectives said he dragged the 43-year-old mother “135 feet to the creek under Legacy Drive where she would not likely be found.”
The report said Sarmistha died of “blunt force injuries” from undisclosed murder weapons found at the scene. Detectives said they collected her blood from Moncrief’s shirt and Sarmistha’s DNA off of his body.
The warrant also said Moncrief was possibly exhibiting signs of mental health issues around the time and told an officer, “I ain’t a coward.”
He now faces a Capital Murder charge.
Bond is set at $11 million.
Sarmistha was an avid runner. She was an early riser who liked to jog around the Chisolm trail every morning.
“I did not know her specifically but my heart breaks for the family. The least I could do it bring a pair of shoes as a sign of love,” said another Plano resident, Mark Wiggins after her death.
Sarmistha’s husband, Arindam Roy said he wants people to focus on her accomplishments, cancer awareness and other positive awareness rather than how she died. A website was created Sen’s honor to showcase her life.
She was born on January 2, 1977 in Sindri, India. Sarmistha grew up in Sindri and later moved to Bangalore, India for higher studies and work. She got married to Arindam Roy and moved to Plano in 2004. She studied in UT Dallas and University of Birmingham, Alabama and worked on cancer research for most of her career.
Along with her husband Arindam, Sarmistha has two children, Neil is 12 and Ryan is 6 years old. They recently also bought a puppy named Milly.
Sarmistha lived a free and fearless life inspiring many with her infectious energy and carefree smile, according to her CaringBridge page. She was an avid gardener and a great cook.
Sarmistha practiced healthy mindful living, according to her family and “she could cook extremely healthy food that tasted amazingly good. She was a trained singer of Indian classical music and loved to teach and perform music. Sarmistha was passionate about cancer care and was a lifelong supporter of cancer research.”
Moncrief is being held in the Collin County Detention Center in McKinney.