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Mississippi mom of three drives into lake with child in SUV: Police

Mississippi police charged 34-year-old Cari Cullum of Hamilton with attempted murder on Friday, a week after she backed her vehicle into a lake while she and one of her three children were inside, the Clarion-Ledger reported.

According to WTVA, the incident happened in the evening on September 21 when officials were alerted that a man had rescued a woman and a 2-year-old child from an SUV in Columbus Lake at a boat ramp near Columbus Lock and Dam. Columbus police said the man was a friend of the woman, who had called him. He broke a window and pulled the pair out before first responders arrived.

Police Chief Fred Shelton said the woman and child were taken to a hospital, but he released few details about the incident. While he called the man who rescued the pair “a hero,” he did not say if investigators thought that the incident was an accident or intentional.

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Over the weekend, investigators said they believed Cullum, an elementary school teacher, had intentionally driven into the lake at East Bank Landing, according to WCBI. Shelton called the incident “tragic,” but said it wasn’t an acccident.

“Following a detailed investigation, we have charged Ms. Cullum with attempted murder,” Shelton said in a news release. ” … Our investigation continues into the incident. Her children are in the care of another person at this time. She has not yet had her preliminary hearing.”

Cullum’s Facebook page says that she is a second grade teacher at Hamilton  Elementary School, but the Monroe County School District would not confirm if she was still employed. The social media page said that she is divorced, and it contained multiple photos of Cullum and her children, including the two-year-old.

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[Featured image: Cari Callum, Columbus Police Department]