A woman who was intentionally run over with a U-Haul pickup truck during a child custody dispute in Los Angeles earlier this year -a chaotic scene that was captured on officer’s dash-cam and body worn cameras- is speaking out about the violent ordeal.
The assault occurred on Oct. 1 after Harbor Division officers responded to calls of the dispute in the parking lot of a Target store at Gaffey Street and Capitol Drive in San Pedro, according to a LAPD news release.
The victim, April Barnes, who was helping a friend that is the foster parent of a 5-year-old boy, told KTLA’s Omar Lewis that she’s spent the last month trying to make sense of the whole thing.
“I just don’t get it. I’m doing my best, but I just don’t get it,” she said. “I’ve been in disbelief that I was actually ran over.”
When she and her friend, who is the foster parent to the boy’s cousin, arrived to pick him up, the 5-year-old’s mother, 39-year-old Miesha Scott, refused to return him after a visitation.
“She said she’s not giving him back, she’s suicidal and she has a gun,” Barnes explained.
Worried, Barnes and her friend called 911 to get help.
“I’m in distress. You need another help for that – don’t do that, please,” Scott can be seen telling officers on their body-worn cameras.
After officers contacted the department of children and family services, Barnes said the 39-year-old woman agreed to return her son to his foster parent and got in the truck to leave.
“I said please keep her over there so we can get out of here and before I could finish asking him for the case number, so we can reference that, she came charging,” Barnes told KTLA.
Scott is seen on surveillance footage running Barnes over before leading police in a 5-minute pursuit, crashing into a tree and being taken into custody. The 39-year-old was taken to the hospital for the injuries she sustained during the crash.
Barnes said that she’s been in excruciating pain since the violent incident, but that her main concern is the little boy who watched the entire situation unfold from inside a nearby car.
“I’m hoping that little guy gets a fair shot at growing up and being a healthy young man,” she said. “The most hurtful thing was when we walked away with him, she was screaming out ‘I love you,’ and I don’t want him to see that as love.”
She’s also hoping that police learn from what happened that night as well.
“She threatened to harm us in front of the officers, so we thought that was a clear indication that she was not well and that she was a threat,” Barnes said. “How they let her get in the car and pull off, I don’t know if that’s policy or not. I hope it’s not.”
Scott now faces two counts of attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon on an officer.
Meanwhile, Barnes said the child’s foster parent is trying to relocate him to family members out of the state for his own safety.