'I'm still her dad': Father of 5-year-old girl found dead in closet wants justice

HOUSTON – The father of a 5-year-old girl whose body was found in a closet on Labor Day said he just wants justice for his daughter.

Edward Luna issued a written statement Wednesday about the death of his daughter, Sierra Patino. Her mother, Priscilla Torres, has been charged with tampering with a human corpse, in connection with the case.

“Justice for us all is having my daughter at rest and whoever is involved to understand that (an) innocent life who still had a whole life ahead of her was taken so short,” Luna said in his statement. 

Luna admits that he wasn’t around his daughter much, but said he still feels the pain of her death.

“I understand I wasn’t around my daughter the 5 years but it doesn’t change the fact that I’m still her dad,” Luna said. “No one wants to know their child has passed away. The family (is) taking it hard and (we’re) hoping God will help us all.”

According to prosecutors, Torres initially said Sierra drank toilet bowl cleaner while Torres was giving her a bath. Torres said Sierra started showing signs of chemical burns but feared calling authorities because she was worried her child would be taken away, according to prosecutors.

Torres later changed her story to say that her boyfriend was the one giving Sierra a bath when she started exhibiting signs of chemical burns.

Priscilla Torres is seen in this mug shot released by the Houston Police Department on Sept. 3, 2019.

Prosecutors said Torres wrapped Sierra’s body in a blanket and put the body in a closet because she “didn’t want to let her daughter go.”

Police have not charged Torres’ boyfriend with a crime but said the case is under investigation.

Torres is being held in jail on $50,000 bail.

About the Author:

Aaron Barker

Aaron Barker has been a senior digital editor at KPRC 2 since 2016. As a meteorologist, he specializes in stories about the weather. He has covered Hurricane Harvey, the Astros first World Series win, the Santa Fe High School shooting, the ITC fire and Tropical Storm Imelda.