Irving mom testifies about day children drowned

The mother whose three young children drowned in an Irving apartment complex swimming pool is trying to get her remaining children back.

Patricia Allen's attorney was hoping she'd regain full custody of her two surviving children, but the judge was not quick to restore her parental rights, first ordering alcohol, drug and psychological testing as well as a home evaluation.

Patricia Allen took the stand at Thursday’s court hearing, testifying about what happened at her apartment pool on June 24, the day things went terribly wrong. Three of her five children drowned under her supervision.

Her attorney had her recount exactly what happened.

Allen testified that she and her children could all swim. She told the judge she was in the water holding her 3-year-old son and had told the other children not to go past three feet deep.

Then, she noticed her other son struggling.

“Even before you tried to put that 3-year-old down, did you try to grab that kid?” said her attorney.

“Yes,” said Allen. “I was going towards but it was getting too deep with having my son in my arms and I couldn't go under with him…my eyes darted around the pool to see if there was anybody that could help. I didn't see anybody, so I started yelling and screaming.”

Allen's attorney, Howard Rosenstein, says he was trying to show the judge that his client was not negligent and was not on her cell phone at the time.

While the judge's decision Thursday was not what he'd hoped for, he does call it a step in the right direction.

The next hearing for the case is scheduled for Nov. 18. The judge will review the progress and may decide if the kids get to return to her care full time.