An American man from Florida attacked his wife in a restaurant parking lot, then picked up his young children from the baby-sitter’s and killed them before taking his own life, authorities said.
Chericia Brown, 31 — who was targeted by Henry Brown, 30 — had warned authorities months ago that her estranged husband was abusive and threatening to kill her.
Her fears were realized at 10 p.m. Sunday, after Chericia Brown left the restaurant.
Henry Brown was waiting outside with a knife, Seminole County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Dennis Lemma said.
SHELTERS PLAGUED BY DOMESTIC ABUSE, ABANDONED CHILDREN, NEGLIGENT PARENTS
As Chericia Brown lay wounded, Brown got into a vehicle and ran over her and two people rendering aid, Lemma said.
The man drove to Altamonte Springs and changed vehicles to a Ford F250.
He also picked up his children, ages 1 and 4, from the baby-sitter’s, Lemma said.
Brown drove to Central Florida Regional Hospital, where his wife was admitted but security and witnesses recognized him, Lemma said. His cover blown, Brown pulled out a gun, firing as he ran out of the hospital.
He reentered the pickup truck and drove along Interstate 4, authorities in pursuit.
The vehicle stopped.
Inside, authorities found Brown and the children, all dead.
“We found that the driver had committed suicide,” Lemma said. “The two child passengers that were in the car … were also killed by the suspect.”
Chericia Brown died at the hospital from her injuries.
The two people helping her in the restaurant were in stable condition Monday, Lemma said.
The husband and wife had a rocky relationship.
Henry Brown, 30, stabbed his wife in a Chili’s parking lot before killing his children and himself, authorities said.
The abuse worsened in November, after Chericia Brown found out Henry was having an affair, she wrote in a December domestic violence report she provided to authorities.
She asked for a divorce, and he pushed for full custody.
“He pulled my hair and head to the left and whispered, ‘If you take my kids away … I will personally kill you,’” she wrote. “One day you leave your job or walk down the street. You don’t even know it.”
The fighting continued one day later, after Chericia Brown found “emails and pics of other girls” on her husband’s phone.
She sent the items to her phone — and Henry became enraged when she wouldn’t give him her phone passcode.
He grabbed her hair and tried to jam a sock into his wife’s mouth, according to the four-page statement. But Chericia Brown bit back.
“I should hit you for that. I really want to hit you,” he said.
As the scuffle continued, Chericia Brown grabbed an ironing board and swung it, not realizing the iron was resting on top.
The iron flew — and struck the couple’s 5-year-old son in the knee.
The parents stopped fighting to check on their son. Chericia Brown later gave Henry the passcode, and the fighting stopped, for the moment, anyway, and he deleted the incriminating emails and photos, then he drove her to work.
After she arrived at work she told her supervisor what happened, and the supervisor drove Chericia Brown to the police department to file a report.
“I was able to leave with my kids,” she wrote in the statement. “He continues to call me/text me. He is now calling all my friends and family in the early hours of the morning nonstop between 2-4 a.m.”
An injunction was issued, but police declined to arrest Henry Brown after Chericia filed the domestic violence report — she had moved out of the house, and the situation appeared to be resolved.