Moment mum ‘pushed’ son into canal

WARNING: GRAPHIC

The husband of a mother accused of killing her nine-year-old son with autism is standing by his wife.

Police have alleged Patricia Ripley, 45, faked her son Alejandro's abduction, after she drowned him in a canal.

Husband Aldo Ripley told local media on Saturday: "It's not real".

But shocking footage has since emerged of the Florida woman appearing to push the boy into the water in what police have said was her first attempt to kill him.

In the clip, which was obtained by security firm Univison, a woman can be seen pulling a boy by the arm along the bank of the water. The woman then pushes the boy into the water and runs away.

Patricia Ripley is accused of murdering her autistic son Alejandro. Picture: NBC6
Patricia Ripley is accused of murdering her autistic son Alejandro. Picture: NBC6

Miami Police have said it was Ripley in the footage, which was captured on a housing complex, claiming it was her first attempt to kill the nine-year-old.

However nearby residents heard yelling and rescued him.

After the alleged failed attempt, police claim Ripley drove her son to another canal at the Miccosukee Golf and Country Club where Alejandro died.

"Unfortunately when she took him to the second canal, and there was no one there,' lawyer Katherine Fernandez Rundle at a press conference, ABC News reports. "She tried it once, and people rescued him. He was alive. He could have stayed alive. She intended, from all the facts of the case, to kill him."

Footage has emerged which allegedly shows Ripley pushing the nine-year-old into a canal in what police say is the mother’s first failed attempt at taking his life. Picture: Univision
Footage has emerged which allegedly shows Ripley pushing the nine-year-old into a canal in what police say is the mother’s first failed attempt at taking his life. Picture: Univision

The mother was arrested 48 hours later after she reported him missing, allegedly telling police she was ambushed while driving with her son by two men - one who was armed with a knife, who demanded drugs - the report states.

After Alejandro's body was discovered, police said Ripley confessed, telling them: "He's going to be in a better place."

Investigators believe the motive for the alleged murder was the boy's disability, which had "overwhelmed" Ripley.

Alejandro lived with a severe form of autism that left him unable to speak and required around-the-clock care.

Alejandro lived with a severe form of autism. Picture: FDLE
Alejandro lived with a severe form of autism. Picture: FDLE

 

Ripley’s family have pleaded with the public to not jump to conclusions. Picture: Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation via AP
Ripley’s family have pleaded with the public to not jump to conclusions. Picture: Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation via AP

 

Ripley is now facing charges of first-degree murder and attempted premeditated murder which if convicted, could result in a death sentence in the US state or life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The family appear to be standing by Ripley, with their lawyer pleading with the public not to jump to conclusions.

"At this time, we are assembling a legal team in order to make sure her rights are respected and that she has the opportunity to vindicate her good name,"​ Rodriguez-Varela said.

Ripley's husband Aldo Ripley spoke out earlier, telling local reporter's they didn't "agree" with the charges.

"The only thing I'll say is that we love our life, we love Alejandro, and we don't agree with whatever they say about my wife," Aldo told WSVN. "It's not real."

Continue the conversation @RebekahScanlan | rebekah.scanlan@news.com.au

Originally published as Moment mum 'pushed' son into canal


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