DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) â€” Officials say Daytona Beach police officers stopped a pregnant South Carolina woman shortly before she drove a minivan carrying her three children into the Atlantic Ocean.
Police Chief Mike Chitwood says 31-year-old Ebony Wilkerson’s sister had called police Tuesday, concerned about her mental state. Chitwood said Wednesday that when his officers later stopped her black Honda Odyssey, she expressed fear that her husband would be coming to Florida to harm her and her children. He says the officers reported she seemed lucid and the children appeared to be safe.
Two hours later, Wilkerson drove into the ocean.
Bystanders and officers helped pull Wilkerson and her children â€” ages 3, 9 and 10 â€” from their minivan.
The children were turned over to welfare authorities. The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office says Wilkerson was undergoing a mental evaluation.