- The Washington Times - Monday, October 7, 2013

Family members of the 34-year-old woman who led police on a chase through downtown Washington before being shot dead said Monday the police should not have fired on her car.

Police did not take into account Miriam Carey’s potential state of mind before she died Thursday after trying to breach a barrier at the White House and taking off in a black Infiniti, her sisters told CNN.

“My sister’s afraid and she’s frightened and she’s trying to get out of there,” Valarie Carey, a former New York City police officer, said.

Law enforcement and others have defended officers’ actions, noting the deadly speed of Miriam Carey’s vehicle and the security risks in target-rich Washington.

House members gave Capitol Police a standing ovation shortly after the chase that ended in a lockdown on Capitol Hill amid reports of gunfire.

The family told CNN they have not been able to view Ms. Carey’s body and deflected question about the deceased woman’s infant daughter, who was in the vehicle but not harmed during the incident. They said they are doing what they can to make sure the child is OK but are “not sure where she will end up.”

Ms. Carey reportedly suffered from postpartum depression with psychosis, a factor officers could not have known during the chase. Nonethless, the family said, police have protocols that account for a fleeing person’s state of mind.

“You just do not shoot at a vehicle — that’s not the way it works,” family attorney Eric Sanders told CNN.

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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