Driver Charged With Murder After Striking Family Of 8, Killing Mom

February 20, 2019 - 7:23 pm

Updated at 9:38 a.m. on February 21, 2019

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — A mother of six children was killed by a driver who may have intentionally driven into a family of eight in Rockland County Wednesday evening.

According to WCBS 880’s Mike Smeltz, the driver was smoking outside a 7-Eleven in Garnerville when the family asked him to stop.

Authorities say the suspect became enraged by the request and the argument quickly escalated.

“At some point the suspect then got into his vehicle and deliberately, it appears deliberately, took the vehicle and rammed it in to these individuals and subsequently in to the store itself, and then we believe, backed up the vehicle and then subsequently hi the victims again.

All eight, including an infant child, were rushed to Montefiore Nyack Hospital, where the 32-year-old mother was later pronounced dead.

The mother was reportedly pregnant, according to the Daily News.

The 35-year-old father and his 2-year-old son are in serious condition. The other five children, ranging in ages from less than a year old to 10-years-old, are in the hospital but are expected to make a full recovery.

Haverstraw Police Captain Martin Lund said that 35-year-old Jason Mendez “took the vehicle and rammed it into these individuals and subsequently into the store itself, and then we believe backed up the vehicle and then subsequently hit the victims again.”

The suspect was still in his car when police got to the scene of the attack. He emerged with a knife in his hand and wouldn’t drop it when told to by officers, forcing police to Taser him.

Police say Mendez’s address is in Texas but he has family in Rockland County. He did not know the family of eight before the incident.

Mendez was placed under arrest and charged with second degree murder and seven counts of attempted murder.

Flowers have been placed below the boarded up window of the store as a community comes to grips with a senseless act of violence.

"I can't understand how people can do that," one Rockland resident told WCBS 880's Marla Diamond Thursday morning. "Something inside of this man snapped and he drove into them. She died right here."