Mother killed sons, self by driving into Mississippi River

Aisha Fair

WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. — The Arkansas state medical examiner says a woman from Memphis, Tennessee committed murder and suicide by driving herself and her two sons into the Mississippi River.

Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Charles Kokes said Wednesday that 26-year-old Aisha Fair and her sons, 7-year-old Charvon Lofton and 2-year-old Jattir Ragland, died by drowning in July.

Kokes said Fair and her boys suffered no substantive injuries when her vehicle hit a semitrailer. Authorities say she then drove off the interstate, down an embankment and into the river.

The children’s deaths were ruled homicides after a Crittenden County police investigation showed no evidence indicating their deaths were anything but intentional.

The ruling confirms what one witness told WREG shortly after the incident.

According to a witness, the initial wreck caused Fair’s vehicle to spin around, facing the interstate before it came to a stop. At that point, the witness said, she turned left and accelerated down the embankment, through a wire barricade and across a road and a soybean field, before launching across a bike trail into the river.

“It was not an accident,” the witness said. “She chose to step on that accelerator and go down that embankment.”

Todd Grooms, the chief of criminal investigations for the sheriff’s office, said Fair had been diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder.

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