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Jamaica dad charged in murder-suicide plot

TimesLedger Newspapers

A Jamaica father was remanded to jail last week after he tried to kill himself and his 2-year-old daughter inside their car that was parked in the rear of a Long Island shop, investigators said.

Khemchan Sulaiman, 45, of 159th Street, was arraigned on second-degree attempted murder charges Oct. 5 from his hospital bed at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in the Rockaways just days after his suicide attempt, a spokesman for the Nassau County district attorney’s office said.

Officers were able to make it in time to save him and his unidentified toddler Oct. 3 after they received a 911 call about an unconscious father and daughter in a car at 311 Central Ave. in Lawrence, L.I.

When the officers arrived around 8:20 a.m., they found the father and daughter were having respiratory problems, according to the police. Sulaiman was rushed to St. John’s while the girl was ultimately taken to the Cohen Children’s Medical Center at North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System in New Hyde Park and was in stable condition as of press time Tuesday, police said.

The child is expected to make a full recovery, according to investigators.

It was not known when Sulaiman will face a Nassau Criminal Court judge in person, according to a spokesman for the Nassau DAs office.

Investigators say they found ammonium chloride, a chemical found in fire extinguishers, inside the child’s baby bottle and the pesticide Sevin inside her car seat. Haz-Mat teams were searching the spot where the car was parked for any harmful conditions, but said the location was safe.

Police say the motive behind the attempted murder and suicide may have stemmed from a dispute between Sulaiman, who worked as a mechanic for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the mother of the girl.

The two were living apart for some time and were fighting over the girl, according to the Nassau County police department.

“It was a bitter separation,” a police spokeswoman said.

The girl’s mother was not identified by investigators and she could not be reached for comment.

He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted on his charge, the DA’s office said.

Reach reporter Ivan Pereira by e-mail at ipereira@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4546.

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