In this photo taken by a neighbor, Pamela McCarthy is reportedly seen running naked before police arrived Tuesday and used a Taser to subdue her. She later died.
Bath salts may be behind the deadly meltdown of an upstate New York woman suspected of beating her 3-year-old son before cops used a stun gun to subdue her, according to reports.
Following the Tuesday night incident, Munnsville mom Pamela McCarthy later died at a hospital after going into cardiac arrest from the effects of the Tasing, reported ABC affiliate WSYR-TV in Syracuse.
Officials said they encountered a “violently combative” suspect and were initially unable to handcuff her.
The child’s father, Jason Williams, talks to reporters in front of the home of Pamela McCarthy, an upstate New York woman who stripped all of her clothes off and was allegedly assaulting her child in front of her home.
“She really was not coherent to what was occurring around her,” New York State Police Capt. Rodney Campbell told reporters Wednesday. “She was not speaking clearly.”
McCarthy, 35, appeared to be high on the synthetic drug linked to a spate of horrific crimes in recent weeks, cops said.
This was not the first time troopers had to respond to calls at the house. They allegedly caught McCarthy under the influence of bath salts multiple times, Campbell said.
On Tuesday, officers first tried using pepper spray to no effect and were forced to Taser the woman, Campbell said. It took two men, a trooper and a fire fighter to finally cuff her, he added.
Neighbors described chaos in the moments preceding McCarthy’s confrontation with the police.
“We heard growling … and a kid crying so we went outside and opened up the door,” neighbor Heather Ames told YNN-TV. “There (McCarthy) was, lying on the ground holding her 3-year-old kid in her arms and just beating him.”
The Munnsville, N.Y., home of Pamela McCarthy.
Ames said she attempted to intervene and tried to wrestle McCarthy off the child.
Jason Williams, the boy’s father, rescued him while McCarthy took off after Ames, she added.
“She grabbed me. She was swinging her arms. I thought she was going to hit me,” Ames told YNN. “She scratched me in the face, then she grabbed my hair.”
David Bridge, another neighbor, told The Syracuse Post-Standard that he saw McCarthy “hit concrete after falling down a flight of stairs and got up like nothing happened.”
Once the boy was taken from McCarthy, she began stripping off her clothes and threatening passersby, reported WSTM-TV in Syracuse.
She then ran inside her home, grabbed her pet pit bull and fell down the stairs again, injuring the dog as troopers arrived on scene, according to reports.
“She needs help,” Williams told YNN.
Federal legislators are racing to enact a ban on the ingredients used to make bath salts, a synthetic drug that when snorted, smoked, injected or taken orally can be physically and mentally dangerous.
The Munnsville assault follows a rash of shocking episodes across the country potentially linked to bath salts.
They include the horrific attack in Miami last month, when Rudy Eugene ate off homeless man Ronald Poppo’s face, police said.
Another man in Miami, Brandon De Leon, was arrested after allegedly barking and trying to eat the hand of a police officer on June 2.
That same day in Louisiana, Carl Jacquneaux, also believed to be using bath salts, allegedly ripped off a chunk of his victim’s face with his teeth.