Woman Faces Prison After Allegedly Driving Into Husband

A Salt Lake City woman has been charged with attempted murder after authorities say she drove her truck into a building with the intention of injuring her husband.

Brenda White and her husband, John, are in the middle of what police describe as an "ugly divorce." They were fighting over property on April 26 when Brenda, 33, allegedly drove her Ford Explorer through the lobby of a building.

Surveillance video from the building shows John White being hit by the Explorer as it crashes through the wall. However, he later told police that his wife had hit him with the truck twice. In the first impact, he said, Brenda knocked him 20 feet into the building. The surveillance video captured the second hit.

Authorities say that witnesses saw the couple arguing earlier in the day, and that Brenda waited until her husband had gotten off work to attack him. When John reportedly ran into the building, she crashed through the lobby, driving in between two elevator banks, authorities said.

"Had anybody come off those elevators or around a corner, they would have clearly been an innocent victim of this," said Salt Lake City police Sgt. Paul Jurosak.

John White suffered a severely dislocated ankle and needed 63 stitches over his legs, arms and face. Witnesses say Brenda was unemotional and remained in the sport utility vehicle until police arrived. The mother of two was arrested and charged with attempted murder. She was later released on $500,000 bail.

Heat of Passion

In 2003, Clara Harris was convicted of first-degree murder for repeatedly running over and killing her husband, David, with her Mercedes-Benz after catching him with his mistress.

She spoke to Diane Sawyer and described the day her husband admitted to the affair.

"He came into the bedroom and looked at me, and said, 'There's, I think there's something that you need to know,'" Harris said. "And, he couldn't get the words out. Then his mouth just dried up, and he was looking at the floor. He finally said, 'You have to know that there is somebody else.'"

Harris' lawyer George Parnham -- who also represents Andrea Yates, the Texas mother facing a second trial for the slayings of her children -- mounted the "heat of passion" defense.

"They have a special name," said Belisa Vranich, director of public education at the Mental Health Association of New York City and a consultant at the National Mental Health Association in Washington, D.C. "They are crimes of passion because we understand that if we take love and we take anger and you put them together it is going to blow up."

Witnesses say John White was terrified after his wife's attack in Salt Lake City. He allegedly hid in a closet and refused to come out until police arrived.

The Whites have two daughters, ages 2 and 4. Jurosak of the Salt Lake City police said John White was "terrified" when he found out his wife had made bail.

Police say Brenda White "reluctantly talked to investigators." She has not made any public statements, but her lawyer e-mailed a comment to ABC News.

"At this time we are not in a position to comment directly on the case as we are still in the process of gathering information," the e-mail said. "However, we are thankful that Mr. White was not more seriously injured and at this time our primary focus is on Brenda's well-being."

If convicted, Brenda White faces five years to life in prison.

Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...