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Reports: Woman in Capitol chase had history of mental illness
A Connecticut woman who was shot to death after leading police on a harrowing car chase around the U.S. Capitol had a history of mental illness and several months before the ordeal believed she was being electronically monitored by authorities, according to reports.
Police contacted 34-year-old Miriam Carey, of Stamford, Conn., last year after her boyfriend called authorities to report that she had been acting delusional and thought her home was being monitored, and he believed the couple’s infant daughter was at risk, CNN reported Friday.
“A few months later, she got sick,” she said. “She was depressed. … She was hospitalized.”
Idella Carey said her daughter had “no history of violence,” and she didn’t know why she was in the District on Thursday. She said she thought Ms. Carey was taking Erica to a doctor’s appointment in Connecticut.
A lawyer representing the family is expected to issue a statement on their behalf Friday. Police still have not officially identified Ms. Carey as the woman involved in the incident.
Investigating authorities said Thursday that the incident was isolated and not linked to terrorism. D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier would not speculate on motive, saying only that it did “not appear in any way that this was an accident.”
The chase began Thursday afternoon when police said a black Infiniti sedan rammed into a security fence by the White House. Secret Service officers chased the vehicle as it fled down Pennsylvania Avenue toward the U.S. Capitol. Police attempted to box in the vehicle at Garfield Circle — just outside the west entrance of the U.S. Capitol. A video taken at the scene shows officers with guns drawn approaching her stopped car. The car can be seen maneuvering away from police and numerous officers fired at her.
Police intercepted the car again a few blocks away after it crashed in the 100 block of Maryland Avenue of Northeast. There officers opened fire on her for the final time.
Two police officers, a U.S. Capitol Police officer and a uniformed Secret Service officer, were injured during the chase. Both were said to be doing well Thursday night. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, on Friday offered his support to the Capitol Police officer on Twitter.
“My thoughts are with Brian Carter, a 23-yr veteran of the Capitol Police force, who was injured in yesterday’s incident outside the Capitol,” he said.
A 1-year-old girl, who police have declined to identify, was pulled unhurt from Ms. Carey’s car. The infant was taken to a hospital to be checked out and turned over to D.C. Child and Family Services Agency on Thursday, D.C. police said.
An agency spokeswoman said she could not disclose whether the girl was still in the agency’s custody on Friday.
“When we have children who come into our care but are residents of other jurisdictions then we need to communicate with our counterparts to get these children home to where they belong,” spokeswoman Mindy Good said.
Ms. Carey, who grew up in New York, had been a licensed dental hygienist in Connecticut since 2009.
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About the Author
Andrea Noble is a crime and public safety reporter for The Washington Times. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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