A British antiques dealer has been charged with murder after he allegedly strangled his 7-year-old daughter to death, the Guardian reports.
Authorities say Robert Peters, 55, used a dressing gown cord to kill his daughter Sophia in the family’s million-dollar residence in southwest London last week.
Peters reportedly called police himself. Emergency crews later rushed the girl to a hospital, where she was put on life support but succumbed to her injuries the next day.
Officials believe the girl’s mother, Kittiya Promsat, was not in the house at the time of the incident.
Peters was first charged with attempted murder but that charge has since been upgraded to murder in the wake of the girl’s death.
“The defendant began to make preparations for the killing by taking the dressing gown cord which was later found tied around Sophia’s neck,” Prosecutor Deanna Heer said.
At a court hearing on Friday, Peters wore a tracksuit and gray sweatshirt; the few words he spoke were only to verify his identity.
A judge scheduled a plea hearing for Jan. 26 and a tentative trial in April. Peters must remain in police custody until his next court appearance.
Family members of the defendant were not at the court hearing.
Peters has been married three times, according to The Sun, which reported that the family had recently moved to the home where the attack occurred.
He reportedly manages an antiques business with his brother in west London that specializes in Asian art and ceramics.
Promsat, the girl’s mother, posted a tribute to her daughter on Facebook earlier this week, Metro reports.
“I love you a lot and love you forever sweetheart,” Promsat reportedly wrote.
[Feature image: Facebook]