A Miami woman has been taken into custody for admitting to drowning her autistic 9-year-old son on Thursday night (May 23), after first telling police two Black men committed the murder. Miami-Dade homicide detectives charged Patricia Ripley, 47, with first-degree murder.
On Thursday, Ripley told police her son Alejandro Ripley had been kidnapped by two robbers who ran her car off the road Thursday night, sparking a statewide manhunt and Amber alert. The search ended early Friday when Alejandro's body was found in a pond at the Miccosukee Golf & Country Club.
Ripley called police on Thursday night and said a light-blue car forced her car off the road near a West Kendall Home Depot. She claimed two Black men were inside, going so far as to describe one as having cornrows. One of men jumped out with a knife, she told Miami-Dade police, and demanded drugs. She said when she told them she didn’t have any, they took her child and drove away.
A source familiar with the investigation said a security camera at a Home Depot near where the alleged abduction took place showed Ripley sitting in her car alone — without Alejandro — for 20 minutes before she called police at 8:47 p.m. on Thursday.
Indeed, authorities discovered she actually tried drowning Alejando earlier Thursday night, but a passerby stepped in and rescued the boy from the water. “An hour later, she brought the boy to a different canal ... this time, there was no one there to save him,” Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said at a Saturday morning press conference.
“For her to place blame of her crime on another community, it’s just as well another crime that was committed. It’s very disappointing,” Miami-Dade Police Director Alfredo Ramirez told reporters Saturday.
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