An Edmonton man is facing attempted murder charges after a family was almost run over Wednesday evening in the Northmount neighbourhood.
Police were called to do a welfare check on a man at around 5:30 p.m. in the area of 121 Avenue and 87 Street. Police said he had a fight with his mother, before fleeing the scene in her Nissan Maxima.
At around 7:30 p.m., witnesses said the man returned. Diane LaFleur and her two-year-old son were getting into their nearby vehicle when the suspect drove the stolen Maxima “toward them, accelerated and hit their vehicle,” a police statement said. The driver reversed and accelerated, hitting the vehicle several times.
“I thought it was an accident until I looked at him and I made eye contact with him as he was reversing,” Lafleur said. “He was looking at me with a really evil look in his eye, like he hated me for something.”
Det. Scott Nolt said the suspect reversed and struck LaFleur’s vehicle three times
“He reversed, and he ran straight into me again and my airbags went off,” LaFleur said. “At that time I was holding down my horn so my boyfriend would hear me and come help.”
“[The boyfriend] attempts to distract the accused, which he was successful in, getting his attention,” Nolt said. “Unfortunately that attention caused him to become the next attempted victim. He wasn’t struck by the car, he was quite athletic.
“He made evasive maneuvers there and fortunately he wasn’t struck with the vehicle.”
The three were able to make it in the house safely and were treated on scene by paramedics for their injuries. The man was taken to hospital for a suspected drug overdose.
Nolt said the man involved “had no dealings before this” with LaFleur and her son.
Amit Mani, 31, has been charged with disqualified driving and three counts each of attempted murder, assault with a weapon and dangerous driving.
“I’m happy, because if he’s being charged with attempted murder then I never have to see him again,” LaFleur said. “And I really don’t want to see him again.”
“He has a history with police,” Nolt said of Mani. “Police had attended that address before in relation to incidents regarding him.”
In 2007, Mani was sentenced to one year of probation for an assault charge. In 2010 he pleaded guilty to one count each of disqualified driving and driving over .08. He was sentenced to 30 days and 120 days to be served consecutively.
– With files from Scott Johnston and Kyle Morris, 630 CHED and Julia Wong, Global News