Day care worker tried to hang a one-year-old toddler in her care before escaping in a mini-van and hitting two people.

Nataliia M. Karia, 42, from Minneapolis, then attempted to take her own life by jumping off a bridge, but was stopped by bystanders.

Authorities added that the 16 month old boy managed to survive. Assistant Police Chief Kris Arneson said a parent arriving at the day care centre to collect a different child saved the boy.

The suspect is believed to be the operator of the day care — took off in a gold mini-van. She hit a pedestrian and bicyclist but kept going, authorities say. The pedestrian suffered several broken bones in the hit-and-run incident.

The suspect was later held back by bystanders on a highway overpass as she threatened to jump. She is now in custody and is being evaluated at a local hospital, police said at a news conference.

“We don’t know what was happening with her,” Mr Arneson told the Minneapolis Star Tribune when asked about the suspect.

He said the facility had fewer than six children inside during the time of the incident.

“It’s horrific, horrific,” Arneson said of the assault on the child. “We never want children to be injured; that’s part of the reason we call in our chaplains. It’s a horrific scene for officers to encounter, and the victims in this case have injuries based on her actions.”

Shannon Keough, 38, told Star Tribune, she first started bringing her soon-to-be 3-year-old son to Karia’s day care when he was about 10 months old. “I always trusted her completely and never had any reservations about dropping him off with her.”

She said that in all that time, “I’ve always known her to be a loving and generous day-care provider and mother.”

“She was like a second mother to my son,” and what she did was “completely inconsistent with who I know her to be.”

While acknowledging that it’s “not my place to diagnose,” Keough noted that Karia’s youngest daughter just had her first birthday in the past couple of weeks, and “I suspect she was struggling with postpartum depression or something similar. I feel a sense of guilt that I didn’t notice she was struggling — how isolated she must have felt.”

If you or someone you know is in need of crisis or suicide prevention support, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit www.lifeline.org.au/gethelp

Share your comments below.

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  • I’m finding this world is becoming an awful place to be. Terrible thing to happen – guess she will be let off for not being in control of her mind at this time.


  • Oh my God, this is horrible. Another terrible example of adults trying to kill children. I can’t make sense of it.


  • Oh my gosh what a crazy lady.


  • This is so scary. You never really know what is going on with other people.


  • I hope all involved recover will. Poor little Thing, glad someone turned up in time


  • Wonder if this woman had a sudden psychotic episode or so as the experiences with her as carer were positive and her behavior at this incident seemed so inconsistent with her usual self.


  • How do these people pass the working with children health check. Such a farce. Only useful if you’ve already been caught.

    • Problem is we don’t know if medical checks are compulsory. It it was she may have passed normal medical examinations but mental health not discovered.
      It appears she obviously has mental health issues of some kind.
      Thankfully the toddler was rescued and hopefully will make a full recovery.


  • This woman needs psychological help. The scary thing is that she cared for children!


  • How awful!! Glad the toddler is ok


  • wow how scary for the parents of the child to know that. I hope the child is ok and that the person responsible is never allowed to be near children again.


  • if that was my child she would hope the suicide attempt worked because I would kill her with my bare hands


  • It certainly sounds like a serious mental break was involved.


  • What happened to her? Can post-partum depression really lead to this?
    I’m glad the toddler is safe!!


  • A horrible story,at least the toddler survived,wishing the young boy a full recovery and all the best for the future.


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