Texas Man Charged with the Murder of Scientist Killed During Morning Run
A Texas man has been charged with the murder of a mother of two who was killed while out on her morning jog.
Bakari Abiona Moncrief has been charged with capital murder for Sarmistha Sen's Aug. 1 death and remains behind bars in Collin County Detention Center in McKinney in lieu of a $11 million bond, according to jail records.
On the morning of her death, Sen, a 43-year-old cancer researcher , got up early to go for a run near her home in Plano. Two hours later, a witness called 911 to report she saw what she believed was a body near a creek. Authorities responded to the scene and found the body, which was later identified as Sen.
Shortly after Sen was killed, officers were called about a burglary at a nearby home, less than 100 yards away from where Sen's body was discovered. Police arrested Moncrief, who has also been charged with burglary, according to jail records.
Authorities believe Sen was likely the victim of a random attack, NBC 5 reported at the time of her death. It remains unclear how she died.
The Plano Star Courier reports that Moncrief was an out-of-state resident who was in town visiting relatives. According to an arrest affidavit, Sen's blood was allegedly found on Moncrief's shirt and DNA evidence connected the alleged murder and burglary.
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According to CBS-11, Sen was born in India. After college, she married Arindam Roy and moved to Plano in 2004. She studied at the University of Texas-Dallas and University of Birmingham, Alabama. She worked on cancer research for most of her career and had two sons, ages 12 and 6.
"Sarmistha lived a free and fearless life inspiring many with her infectious energy and carefree smile," reads a CaringBridge site set up by her family. "Sarmistha was an avid runner, gardener and a great cook. She practiced healthy mindful living 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."
Any money donated to her CaringBridge site will go to Sen's favorite charities that support cancer research and protection of the environment.
Moncrief's attorney, Joshua Andor, could not be reached for comment Wednesday. Andor told CNN his client was arraigned Monday on the murder charge. It is unclear whether he has entered a plea on either charge. According to jail records, Moncrief is being held on a $10 million bond for the murder charge and a $1 million bond for the burglary charge.