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Driver runs over woman, child multiple times near Phoenix

Trent Ferree (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

PHOENIX — Witnesses told police a man driving a truck purposefully ran over a woman multiple times while she and her child were standing on a North Valley sidewalk.

Trent Ferree, 45, was accused of intentionally driving onto a sidewalk Wednesday night and hitting 47-year-old Amy Chervenak, who was married to Maricopa County Sheriff Deputy Sgt. Steve Chervenak, and their 11-year-old daughter.

According to court documents, Ferree allegedly ran over the woman at least three times. A group of neighbors and Chervenak were able to pull the suspect out of the vehicle and detain him until police arrived.

The incident occurred just before 7:30 p.m. near the intersection of 41st Street and Maya Way in Cave Creek.

Amy Chervenak was pronounced dead at a hospital late Wednesday. Her daughter was also hurt, but not as severely.

Ferree was booked on suspicion of first-degree murder and three counts of attempted murder.

According to Sgt. Alan Pfohl, witnesses said Ferree was driving erratically before he struck Amy Chervenak and her daughter while they were walking back from their mailbox.

Ferree told police, according to court documents, that he “drove around the area looking for a victim” and claimed it was due to a combination of alcohol and “hearing vibrations and voices that made him want to murder someone.”

He admitted to police that he ran over Chervenak multiple times to “make sure he killed her.”

The investigation uncovered Ferree had already tried to run over a couple out for a walk earlier in the evening.

The couple, a 53-year-old man and a 48-year-old woman, managed to get out of the way.

Police said Ferree didn’t know the victims nor did he live in the neighborhood.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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