The Arizona man who reportedly told police he intentionally hit his child’s mother with his car during a violent kidnapping has died after a suicide attempt left him hospitalized.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Eric Maes was arrested for the murder of Brittany Walker-Martie, who was mortally injured after trying to save her son from being kidnapped. On February 9, Maes reportedly went to a home in Peoria where he knew Walker-Martie and their 10-month-old son would be, and took control of Walker-Martie’s vehicle as she was loading her child into the car. She tried to hold on to the car as Maes sped away with her son inside, but was thrown from the vehicle.
Following his arrest the next day, Maes reportedly told police that he had intentionally hit Walker-Martie after she was thrown from the car, but it is unclear if this is true. The victim was still alive when emergency responders arrived at the scene, but died at a hospital during surgery.
Abel was found abandoned but safe in Phoenix several hours later, and police apprehended Maes in Phoenix on February 10 following a brief chase.
According to AZCentral.com, Maes died on Friday, six days after a reported suicide attempt at the Maricopa County jail. The coroner’s office has not released the cause of death, and authorities have not shared details about the nature of the suicide attempt.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, the Maricopa County Attorney’s office said last week that Maes was “medically incapacitated,” and dropped the charges against him at the request of his family. As AZCentral.com reports, Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office declined to confirm information about Maes’ death, as the dropped charges meant he was released from custody before he died.
The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office told AZCentral.com that prosecutors agreed to drop the charges after Maes’ family members said they were having trouble making decisions about his medical care because Maes was still in custody. The report does not elaborate on how Maes being in police custody may have interfered with his family’s ability to direct his care.
At the time the charges were dropped, prosecutors said they had the option of re-instating the charges if Maes recovered.
This is a developing story. CrimeOnline will provide further updates when more information is available.