A 33-year-old father has been charged with the murder of his one-year-old son and the attempted murder of his daughter, also one.
Bidhya Sagar Das, who lives with his family in a top floor flat on Wilberforce Road, Hackney, was remanded in custody after a 20-hour manhunt in the Finsbury Park area yesterday.
He was charged this morning, and will appear today at Thames Magistrates’ Court.
Police yesterday cordoned off a large area of the residential streets around the house on Wilberforce Road, in what has been described as a quiet area. Bouquets of flowers lay outside the house, with messages of condolence.
The twins were found with critical head injuries at their home after emergency services were called at around 11pm. The children’s mother, Cristinela Datcu, was seen running out of the building shouting “My kids! My kids!”
The son, Gabriel, died just hours later and his sister Maria remains in a critical condition in hospital.
Newsagent Mr Ali, who runs Food City Express – a corner shop just minutes from Mr Das’s house – said that Mr Das was “always saying hello and stopping for a chat. He came in at least twice a week to buy cigarettes and drink. We would speak in Urdu.”
“His partner came in too – often with the kids. It really is so terrible. The kids were lovely – they looked just like their father,” said the shopkeeper.
Until recently, Mr Das worked at the Pembury Hotel on Seven Sisters Road – just around the corner from Wilberforce Road. It is thought that Miss Datcu works as a cleaner in the same hotel.
“I used to see him every day,” said Dave, 41 currently homeless. “He worked at the reception desk in the evenings and was always kind enough to let me use the toilets.”