Woman Who Drove Mini-Van Full of Kids Into Surf at Daytona Charged With Attempted Murder

Also what the terrified children inside the car said after they were rescued.
3:00 | 03/07/14

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Transcript for Woman Who Drove Mini-Van Full of Kids Into Surf at Daytona Charged With Attempted Murder
And next here tonight, big news on the story that has riveted this nation, the children rescued from a car in the ocean, a car driven there by their mother. Today, for the first time we saw the eyes of the mother who was at the wheel and we're hearing what her terrified children told police about what was happening inside the car. ABC's Steve osunsami has the new details. Reporter: Look into the eyes of this pregnant mother of three who police now say drove this minivan into the atlantic ocean on purpose, with her kids inside begging her to stop. They've charged 32-year-old ebony Wilkerson with three counts of attempted first degree murder and three counts of child abuse. She has yet to enter a plea. You're supposed to protect your children at all cost and you're not supposed to try and kill your children. Reporter: Police say she told the children, ages three, nine and ten, to close their eyes and go to sleep. That she was taking them to "A safer place," but her son seen waving for help in this eyewitness video wasn't having it. Are they saying help? Reporter: Two men and three Daytona Beach lifeguards answered his call, rescuing the family. At the hospital, police say, all three kids kept telling people, "Mom tried to kill us." Her frantic son saying, "Mom was going to drive us in the ocean to die." They called their mother "Crazy," a "Lunatic," "She was going to kill us all dead." Wilkerson's family had tried to hospitalize her the day before and later called police. She's like having a psychosis or something or postpartum. Reporter: Medical experts say the case resembles so many others. Susan smith serving a life sentence for murdering her two children in South Carolina, and Andrea Yates still in a Texas mental hospital for killing her five children. They all experienced psychotic symptoms, whether it's due to an underlying, untreated schizophrenia or bipolar illness is not clear. Reporter: Police say Wilkerson told them she was trying to escape an abusive relationship and that she was driving too close to the water and the waves just pulled her in. Steve osunsami, ABC news, Atlanta.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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