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Mother dies trying to stop carjacking suspect by hanging on to van with baby inside

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Posted at 9:41 AM, Feb 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-11 15:12:54-05

PEORIA, Ariz. — A 30-year-old mother in Arizona has died from her injuries after trying to stop a moving van that had her 10-month-old baby inside.

Tuesday evening, a man, identified as the non-custodial father of the baby, jumped into Brittany Martie's van while the baby was in the back seat. Witnesses say Martie tried to grab onto the van as it sped away to stop the driver.

Martie was thrown off the van and was seriously injured. She was taken to the hospital and later died from her injuries.

“That baby was her life, she doted on that kid,” Martie’s sister told ABC15 at a vigil held in her memory Wednesday.

“We will make sure that Abel knows Brittany,” she added, saying pictures of her sister would be hung in her house so the young child could see his mom and recognize her.

Phoenix police issued an AMBER Alert for the baby Tuesday night, identifying the driver and non-custodial father as Eric Maes.

Wednesday afternoon, police were called to an area where witnesses saw Maes.

The van was found abandoned, the child was located nearby in good health.

After initially running from officers, Maes was caught.

Court records on Thursday indicate Maes had smoked methamphetamine Tuesday before confronting Martie. He told investigators Martie jumped out of the van while he was going 30 to 40 miles per hour, according to ABC15. Once she was on the sidewalk, Maes allegedly admits he turned the van around and hit her.

Maes now faces premeditated first-degree murder, endangerment, kidnapping and other charges.

This story originally reported on ABC15.com.