Mom charged after allegedly driving vehicle with child into Offatts Bayou

Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Mom charged after allegedly driving car with child into bayou
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Galveston police say the mother ran over a man before she drove her car into the bayou, and she may have been under the influence during it all

GALVESTON, TX (KTRK) -- A woman accused of driving into a Galveston County bayou with an infant in the back seat has been arrested.

They were saved by fisherman, after their car went into the water. Now the mother, Latonya Kirven, has now been charged in the case.

Authorities say it all started just after 5pm Monday in the 500 block of 42nd Street after Kirven's silver Pontiac struck a vehicle parked outside a home. Police say a man inside the house came out and started arguing with Kirven.

That's when Kirven allegedly ran him over and fled the scene.

Minutes later, police received reports that a silver Pontiac had just driven into Offatts Bayou. Nearby fishermen spotted an infant floating in the water and immediately jumped in to rescue the child.

Good Samaritans also tried to rescue Kirven but authorities say she fought them.

"She became combative and refused assistance to exit the bayou. After officers arrived on scene, several Galveston patrol officers entered the water to pull her to the shore. She was now unclothed, experiencing severe signs of intoxication," Galveston Police Department Chief Henry Poretto said.

Police say Kirven appeared to be intoxicated and she was transported to UTMB for minor injured and to provide a blood sample. The child was uninjured but taken to the hospital for observation.

The man who was struck by the Pontiac is still at UTMB, where he is listed in critical condition.

As for Kirven, she was released from the hospital and booked into the Galveston County Jail, where she's being held on bonds totaling $160,000. She faces two charges, DWI and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. However, authorities say more charges could be filed against her.

"Videos of both the Aggravated Assault with the vehicle and the incident at Washington Park exist and are currently being reviewed by investigators, but because of their evidentiary status will not be released until the investigation is complete," the Galveston Police Department said in a prepared statement. "This is still a very active investigation that is still in its earliest stages, but be assured that our detectives are working tirelessly to bring this case to a close."

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