Mom Who Drove Kids Into Ocean Charged

Florida woman accused of trying to kill her 3 children

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 7, 2014 2:12 PM CST

(Newser) – The 32-year-old mother who drove her three kids into the Atlantic Ocean has been charged with attempted murder, reports CNN. Ebony Wilkerson has denied trying to harm her kids, but they and witnesses at the scene in Daytona Beach tell a much different story. "She actually told them to close their eyes and go to sleep, she was taking them to a better place," said Volusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson. Bystanders entered the surf and got the kids out of the minivan, and police say Wilkerson—who was outside the vehicle—tried to block them from doing so, reports News13.

Family members say Wilkerson, who is pregnant, spoke of demons earlier in the day, and Johnson said the criminal charges will help ensure she gets whatever mental health treatment is necessary. The Palm Beach Post reports that Wilkerson was involved in a fatal car accident in 2007. Police say she switched lanes and hit another vehicle, killing a 35-year-old new mom inside.

This booking photo released by the Volusia (Fla.) County Division of Corrections shows Ebony Wilkerson.
This booking photo released by the Volusia (Fla.) County Division of Corrections shows Ebony Wilkerson.   (Fla.) County Corrections)
In this image made from video, lifeguards and bystanders rescue children from the minivan in Daytona Beach, Fla.
In this image made from video, lifeguards and bystanders rescue children from the minivan in Daytona Beach, Fla.   (AP Photo/Simon Besner)
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