Mother accused of forcing 8-year-old daughter to help in plot to poison husband with antifreeze

Mother accused of forcing 8-year-old daughter to help in plot to poison husband with antifreeze
Renee Burke, 40, is charged with the attempted murder of her estranged husband. If convicted, she could spend up to 25 years in prison. (Source: Suffolk County Police/News 12 Long Island/CNN)

RIVERHEAD, NY (News 12 Long Island) - Prosecutors say a woman in New York allegedly put antifreeze in several beverages in her estranged husband’s apartment in an attempt to kill him. She also allegedly enlisted her young daughter’s help in the plot.

Renee Burke, 40, is charged with the attempted murder of her estranged husband. Authorities say the two are locked in a bitter custody battle over their two children, an 8-year-old girl and a 4-year-old boy.

In September, Burke allegedly entered her husband’s apartment on at least three separate occasions and poured a pink liquid into various beverage bottles, including wine and soda.

Prosecutors say the liquid was a brand of antifreeze called Prestone.

Burke is accused of poisoning the beverages in front of her daughter, even allegedly having the 8-year-old help her open a bottle of wine on one occasion.

Prosecutors say Burke also concealed the antifreeze inside of a child’s bottle.

At one point, the 4-year-old boy told the babysitter that his mother had put something in “daddy’s drink,” according to Suffolk County District Attorney Tim Sini.

Prosecutors say Burke researched the chemical online and they have surveillance video of her committing the alleged crime.

“The evidence in this case includes video surveillance taken inside the victim’s home that shows the defendant taking a wine bottle out of the fridge and taking baby bottles filled with antifreeze and pouring the liquid into the wine bottle. She did this, worst of all, in the presence of her child, even with the assistance of her child,” Sini said.

Burke’s husband was not hurt. Each time he allegedly drank the antifreeze, prosecutors say he noticed a chemical taste and spat out the drink.

He currently has primary custody of the couple’s children.

If convicted in the case, Burke could spend up to 25 years in prison.

Copyright 2019 News 12 Long Island, Suffolk County Police via CNN. All rights reserved.