Charges for woman who drove her children into river

Posted: April 18, 2014

FLORENCE A woman drove her three teenage children into the Delaware River on Tuesday night in an attempt to kill them, authorities said Wednesday.

Joann Smith, 49, of Florence, has been charged with attempted murder and endangering the welfare of children.

Around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Smith veered off West Front Street onto a boat ramp, speeding as she barreled toward the river, police said. The car then plunged into the water.

Smith and her children, ages 15, 14, and 13, were rescued after a man helped them out of the water, police said. They escaped mostly unharmed, except for one of the children's being cut in a leg.

Smith is being evaluated at a medical facility, authorities said, and is expected to have a court appearance Thursday.

Her bail was set at $600,000.


mboren@phillynews.com

856-779-3829 @borenmc

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