A Berkeley County mom drives her van with 3 children inside into the ocean.


Daytona Beach, FL (WLTX)- Investigators say a South Carolina woman drove her van with three kids inside into the ocean in Daytona Beach on Tuesday evening.

According to an incident report from the Daytona Beach Police, the 32 year old woman is from Cross, South Carolina.

A beach safety officer says the van with a South Carolina tag was driving recklessly on the beach. Witnesses helped lifeguards pull the 10, 9 and 3 year old out of the van. All four occupants were taken to the hospital.

Two hours prior to the incident, Daytona Police say the woman's sister called 911 to report her sister was mentioning demons and acting "off".

Police made contact with the woman and found that she did not make any comments that were suicidal or homicidal. Volusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson says if she had, the woman would have been taken into custody under the Baker Act.

"She had the right answers and she said she was heading to an abuse shelter and so at that time they could not do anything, but two hours later it escalated to this," said Sheriff Johnson.

The mother is undergoing a mental evaluation and the three children have been turned over to the care of the Florida Department off Children and Families. No charges have been filed in the case.

Our state has had two other high profile cases involving mothers' driving their cars into the water. Susan Smith was arrested and charges with 2 counts of murder in November of 1994. She rolled her car into a lake in Union County killing her 3 year old and 14 month old sons. Nine days after her car was pulled from the water she confessed to the crime. More recently, Shaqan Duley, an Orangeburg mother killed her two young boys in 2010. Duley plead guilty to suffocating her two boys, strapping them in a car seat, and driving into the Edisto River.

Duley is serving 35 years in prison and Susan Smith is currently serving a life sentence in Greenwood County.

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