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Yonkers Man Charged In Death Of 35-Year-Old White Plains Mother

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Michael Saunders (credit: Handout via CBS 2)

Michael Saunders (credit: Handout via CBS 2)

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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A Yonkers man has been arrested and charged in the death of a 35-year-old single mother found in her apartment over the weekend.

Police found Sabrina Durrah lying dead on the floor of her Main Street apartment in White Plains on Saturday afternoon. Police suspect Durrah had been dead since Wednesday.

Durrah’s 4-month-old daughter was found crying near her mother’s body, suffering from dehydration.

1010 WINS’ Al Jones reports

The baby was treated at a nearby hospital and later released to extended family.

“She’s healthy and beautiful,” cousin Irwin Tollinger told CBS 2’s Lou Young, adding when asked how the child was doing so well considering how long it went without food and water, “That’s why we believe in God.”

Michael Saunders, 49, was picked up by police on Monday night while at work at the Liberty Line Bus Company. White Plains Commissioner David Chong said Saunders was considered a “person of interest almost immediately” in the case.

Saunders, who is believed to be the baby girl’s father, was questioned by police and charged early Tuesday morning with second-degree murder.

Saunders’ immediate family members sped away from court Tuesday, but others questioned the police’s take that the killing was an attempt to keep the affair and the child they had together a secret.

“I don’t get it! Why would the father of the kid do something like that? I don’t get it,” Saunders friend Tamara Brower told CBS 2’s Young.

Chong said Saunders had a relationship with Durrah, but the two did not live together. Sources tell CBS 2 the victim was developmentally disabled and used the bus company Saunders drives for. Sources said that is how the two met.

Saunders, who has a wife and two children in Yonkers, was arraigned Tuesday afternoon. He was ordered held without bail. His neighbors were stunned by the allegations.

“He got a little boy and a step-daughter. That’s one of the coolest guys ever, one of the coolest guys ever I tell you,” one person told Young.

Police have not offered a cause of death or motive for the killing.

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