Owner of home where missing Texas child’s family lived says parents are good people
The man with whom the family of missing 6-year-old Noel Rodriguez-Alvarez lived in Everman describes the mother and stepfather as caring and kind, saying the parents spoiled their seven children and made sure they were never in need.
Police say the boy hasn’t been seen since November, but authorities weren’t alerted that he was missing until about a week ago. According to Everman police, Noel’s mother lied to investigators about her son being with his father in Mexico. She, her husband and the six other children they are raising left the country two days before an Amber Alert was issued for Noel on Saturday.
Charles Parson, 71, owns the Everman home behind which the family was staying in a converted shed in the 3700 block of Wisteria Drive. Parson told the Star-Telegram on Tuesday that he believes Cindy Rodriguez-Singh and her husband, Arshdeep Singh, acted out of panic when they took Noel’s six siblings and left the United States on a flight bound for Turkey.
Everman Police Chief Craig Spencer said at a news conference Tuesday afternoon that the investigation so far has not found evidence of what happened to Noel nor whether a crime was committed. His mother and stepfather took the six other children on a Turkish Airways flight to Istanbul on Thursday, according to police. Spencer said the flight was meant to connect to India, where Arshdeep Singh is from originally, but authorities aren’t yet certain of the family’s final destination.
Parson said that neither Rodriguez-Singh nor her husband made any indication to him that they were planning to leave the country. But he believes the mother was afraid of losing her children. He said that a period a couple of years back when her kids were taken out of her custody “almost broke her completely.” He said he can’t imagine Rodriguez-Singh would ever do anything to harm Noel.
Rodriguez-Singh moved in with Parson about 10 years ago. He said she was sleeping in her car outside his house, and he told her she could stay with him. He was alone in the house and had two empty bedrooms.
Soon, he said, Rodriguez-Singh became a family member to him. He became her “adopted godfather,” he said. She was never charged rent but would help with bills and help care for Parson when he had medical needs. He can’t recall a time when he was the one to buy food for the house since she moved in.
Parson and the family would regularly eat meals together and he got to know all of them well, he said.
Parson described Rodriguez-Singh as hard-headed and opinionated but kind at heart. Singh, he said, cared about his wife and all the children and would spoil them with clothes and toys. The family had problems like any other, Parson said, but from everything he saw, they truly care about each other.
He recalled one time when a child was being bullied at school. The two parents went to the school and refused to leave until they were certain the child was safe and wouldn’t face any more harassment.
The mother and children at first lived in the house with Parson. When Cindy and Arshdeep got married, the husband bought the family a building that Parson allowed them to put in the back yard, he said. It has electricity and air conditioning, but no bathroom. Parson said the back door to his home was always unlocked so the family could come and go as they pleased and use the bathroom and shower in the house. The family also still used the two extra bedrooms inside Parson’s home.
Singh also bought the children a play set and a trampoline that were set up in the back yard.
Noel is a shy boy but sweet, Parson said. Because of his disabilities, it could be difficult for his parents to care for him sometimes, but they always did their best, he said. According to authorities, Noel’s disabilities include a chronic lung disease that requires medical treatment and occasional oxygen treatment. He had never been enrolled in school, according to police.
When Noel’s half-siblings — twins who are now 5 months old — came along, things got a little tougher, Parson said.
Parson said Noel was jealous of the twins and sometimes would refuse to eat anything, leading him to occasionally become dangerously thin. Around November, he said, Rodriguez-Singh told him she tried to send Noel to his father in Mexico so he could receive more special attention, but the father either couldn’t or didn’t want to take him in. But, Rodriguez-Singh told Parson, the father’s sister agreed to take him in.
Parson said he isn’t sure where Noel’s aunt lives, but believes it is Mexico. Police say they’re investigating whether Noel might be with any relatives they haven’t spoken with yet.
Police have said Rodriguez-Singh told investigators when they first asked about Noel on March 20 that he was living with his father in Mexico. The father had been deported at some point before Noel was born, but investigators were able to get in touch with him. The father told authorities that he did not know where Noel was and that he had never been able to meet his son, and police said they verified his statement.
When police were unable to find Noel, they issued the Amber Alert and later an endangered missing person alert. Police said that Rodriguez-Singh avoided their attempts to contact her after the initial welfare check on March 20. Parson and Noel’s biological father have cooperated with the investigation, and Parson gave them permission to search his property, police said.
The day before the family left the U.S., Singh drove Parson to the hospital for a medical operation, Parson told the Star-Telegram. Parson was expecting the family to pick him up afterward, but every time he tried to call the parents he got a message that their phones had been disconnected.
Police have said that Rodriguez-Singh had a history of investigations and actions taken by Child Protective Services along with “an extensive” history of alcohol-related crimes.
Parson said Tuesday that Rodriguez-Singh had her children taken away after she crashed into a pole about two years ago with the children in the car. She was drunk, Parson said. He told the Star-Telegram she has been on probation for the last two years, was required to do random daily breathalyzer tests and hadn’t had any alcohol since she started probation.
She has 10 children total — the seven she had custody of, and three who live with her grandmother, according to Everman police.
Court records show that Rodriguez-Singh was sentenced to 10 years of probation in 2020 for a felony repeat conviction of driving while intoxicated. Tarrant County court records indicate a petition was filed Tuesday to revoke her probation. Police said they issued a warrant for Rodriguez-Singh on a charge of filing a false report.