GEORGES TWP. (KDKA) — A woman is facing charges for allegedly crashing a vehicle in Fayette County before lighting it on fire with a young child inside.
According to a criminal complaint, the incident took place around 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 1400 block of Georges Fairchance Road in Georges Township.
The accused, Marketta Walker, is a paranoid schizophrenic, according to family members. Family members were in the process of having the woman committed to a mental health facility when she stole her aunt’s car. Walker’s 5-year-old nephew was in the car when she locked the doors and drove away, striking multiple vehicles.
“I was so scared, I didn’t know what to do, I followed her in my car but she was out of sight,” Margaret Walker, the suspect’s mother, said.
Passing motorists, including Clifford Kay, saw the vehicle crash into a fence and approached to see if the occupants were okay.
“I said ‘if you don’t wind the widow down I’m gonna bust the window out.’ She goes to the front seat and lights the floor on fire,” he said.
Concerned for the child in the backseat, Kay tried to break the windows by punching, but it did not work. Finally, he found a hammer in his car and broke open one of the windows.
Walker refused to hand over the child, and threatened to break the child’s neck. The motorists were eventually able to wrestle the boy away from the woman, and get both out of the burning vehicle.
“I just thank God he was there and I didn’t have to bury my grandson and my daughter. He told me today God had his arms round everybody,” Margaret Walker said.
Police took Walker into custody. She is charged with attempted criminal homicide, kidnapping, endangering the welfare of a child.