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Eric Maes
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Suspect in Peoria kidnapping/murder dies after suicide attempt

Eric Maes (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

PHOENIX – The man who allegedly killed the mother of his son while he was kidnapping the boy in Peoria has died, authorities said Monday.

Eric Maes, 30, died on Friday, a week he tried to kill himself while in custody, according to the Maricopa County Medical Examiner. He’d been hospitalized since the suicide attempt Feb. 13, three days after he was arrested.

The charges against Maes included first-degree murder.

Last week, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office said it dropped the charges against Maes because he was medically incapacitated.

“At the request of his family, they asked that we dismiss these charges so that they would have the ability to make a medical decision on his behalf and to have access to him,” MCAO spokeswoman Jennifer Liewer told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Thursday.

On Thursday, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said he wasn’t expected to survive.

MCSO said last week that Maes’ self-harm is being investigated by the agency’s Jail Crime Detectives and Professional Standards Bureau.

On Feb. 9, Maes allegedly kidnapped 10-month-old Abel Maes near 91st Avenue and Deer Valley Road and drove off in the van belonging to Brittanie Martie, the child’s mother.

Martie, 30, was seriously injured during the incident and died at a hospital.

The events triggered an Amber Alert. Abel was found safe on the doorstep of a residence near 19th and Peoria avenues early the next morning.

Later in the day, police arrested Maes in Phoenix.

According to arrest documents, Maes told police he intentionally struck Martie after she jumped out of the moving vehicle.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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