Woman searched boyfriend's phone, hit him with van, killed another, officials say

2022-09-17 05:28:43 By : Mr. zhao li ming

An Avondale woman accused of hitting two people with her car last month, killing one man and leaving another wounded, was targeting the father of her infant child, according to the Hamilton County Prosecutor's Office.

Taah’viya Chapman, 24, was indicted Thursday on charges of aggravated murder, murder, felonious assault, attempted murder and endangering children, court records show. One of the victims, Christopher Scott Griffith, 58, died as a result of the incident, police said.

If convicted on all charges, Chapman faces a maximum sentence of life in prison, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said during a Thursday afternoon press conference.

Investigators say Chapman struck Griffith and Jawon Khalid Lunsford near the Spring Grove Village Kroger on Kenard Avenue. Lunsford and Chapman share an 8-month-old child, who was in Chapman's vehicle during the incident, prosecutors said.

Chapman dropped Lunsford off at the Kroger, Deters said. While he was inside the store, Chapman searched through Lunsford's cell phone and believed he'd been in an "inappropriate" relationship with her sister, he added.

Video footage shows the vehicle speeding toward Lunsford, exiting the store with grocery bags in hand, and striking him as he attempts to jump out of the way.

Griffith, supporting himself with a cane, was walking up to the store when the vehicle hits the curb and runs him over, the video shows.

The vehicle comes to a stop in the parking lot and a woman, identified as Chapman, exits the vehicle, runs over to Lunsford and starts throwing punches, the video shows.

She's then seen getting back into her vehicle before exiting again and attempting to flee the scene, according to the footage. Deters said she was stopped by a "good Samaritan" and arrested by police at the scene.

Prosecutors said Griffith died of his injuries at the University of Cincinnati Hospital Medical Center. Lunsford suffered a broken leg.

In the past year, Chapman was charged separately with child endangering and interference with custody.

In the child endangering case from December 2021, Chapman is accused of hitting a 9-year-old girl with a belt and punching her in the eye. Recent court filings show Chapman plans to say she was acting in self-defense. It does not appear the two child-endangering cases involved the same juvenile.

Prosecutors say she's currently being held at the Hamilton County Justice Center.

Molly B. True, a close friend and former girlfriend of Griffith's, said he was a renowned audio engineer who toured with artists such as Aerosmith, Prince and Harry Connick Jr.

In 2013, Griffith was getting ready to go back on tour when he was paralyzed from the neck down following a motorcycle crash, True said. He eventually made a recovery and was able to walk with a cane, she said.

Griffith founded Look Twice Cincy, a charity focused on raising awareness of driver safety and helping others who've been in motorcycle crashes, True said.

"He saved my life on more than one occasion," True said. "He was just golden.

And for something like this to happen," she said, "it's just obscene."

Enquirer reporter Cameron Knight contributed.

This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: Deters: Woman accused of hitting men at Kroger targeted father of child

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