Woman killed in US car chase had post-partum depression: Family

Miriam Carey,34,had her one-year-old baby in the car with her.

Written by Reuters | Stamford | Published: October 6, 2013 12:38 am

The woman who engaged police in a dramatic car chase through the streets of Washington,prompting a lockdown of the US Capitol before officers shot her dead,suffered from post-partum depression,her sisters told CNN on Friday,while questioning why she had to die.

Miriam Carey,34,had her one-year-old baby in the car with her on Thursday when she tried to drive her black Infiniti coupe through a barrier near the White House,then sped away toward Capitol Hill,leading police on a high-speed chase that ended when her car got stuck on a median and police shot her.

Investigators probing the incident are focussing on whether Carey had mental problems that triggered her actions,said a US official.

Carey was diagnosed with post-partum depression a few months after the birth of her baby,her sister,Amy Carey-Jones,told CNN host Anderson Cooper on Friday evening.

Carey-Jones,who said she spoke often to her sister,disputed reports suggesting that her sister might have suffered from schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

Carey took medication,which she was tapering off,and participated in counselling and “had her challenges” with the illness,Carey-Jones said. “There was not moments of her walking around with delusions,that’s not what was going on,” she said.

Carey-Jones,who was sitting with her sister Valarie Carey,said her family had “a lot of questions” about her sister’s death and why police opened fire.

Valarie Carey told CNN,“My sister was a loving mother,she was a law abiding citizen,she had no political agenda and she did not deserve to have her life cut down at the age of 34.”

A former New York police sergeant,Valarie said,“My sister could have been any person travelling in our capital. Deadly physical force was not the ultimate recourse and it didn’t have to be.”

“I’m more than certain there was no need for a gun to be used (by police) when there was no gunfire coming from the vehicle,” Valarie added. “I don’t know how their protocols are in DC,but I do know how they are in New York City.”

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