COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

The father of a child allegedly murdered by his mother was fighting for custody of the boy.

Court records show that Jude Thaddeus Gomez, 37, petitioned for custody of 5-year-old Jude Marray-Gomez last December.  A court hearing was scheduled for later this week.

The boy's mother, 42-year-old Shannon Dodson, faces charges of first degree murder in the boy's death.  His body was recovered after a fire at the Hill Park Apartments on Friday morning.  It's unclear who or what started the fire.  Dodson was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.  An autopsy report showed that Marray-Gomez drowned and did not die in the fire.  A background check shows no prior criminal convictions for Dodson.

Neighbors tell KRDO NewsChannel 13 that they are shocked and saddened that a young boy's life could end so abruptly.  

"I just don't understand how someone could do that to their kids," said Jeffrey Bard.  "It's unbelievable that someone would do that.