Cameras captured the horrific final moments of a woman who was killed after she clung to the hood of a speeding van. Norky Contreras Acosta is seen in the footage released by prosecutors in Miami, Florida as she desperately holds on to the van, which sped for eight blocks before she slipped off and was crushed to death.
The newly released footage is now key evidence in the murder case against 22-year-old Natasha Boothe, who accused of driving the vehicle. Hialeah police said the incident began on October 25, when Contreras and her family were struck by the gold Chrysler van while they drove on West 11th Avenue in a blue Volkswagen Tiguan.
The van stopped at the nearby Happy Pawn Shop and the Contreras family pulled into the parking lot to try to stop Boothe from fleeing the scene.
Contreras stood behind the van, leaning on it with her arms crossed in an attempt to prevent the vehicle from leaving – but Boothe began reversing. The van continued backwards and pinned Contreras against a fence, which can be seen in the footage.
Contreras was then ‘able to escape’ and got in front of the van ‘in a further attempt to prevent the driver from leaving,’ according to Boothe’s arrest warrant. Boothe then accelerated the van forward and Contreras jumped on the hood to avoid being run over, police said.
Contreras did not let go of the van as it sped through the neighbourhood, ‘braking violently, speeding and driving erratically from left to right at high speed in an attempt to force the victim to fall from the hood,’ according to the arrest warrant.
Cameras do not capture the moment Contreras was thrown from the hood and run over, leaving her with ‘traumatic injuries throughout her body,’ Hialea Detective Joseph Elosegui wrote. Contreras was taken to Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital where she was later pronounced dead.
Boothe was identified by investigators who viewed the surveillance video from the pawnshop and interviewed witnesses, including one who reportedly got the van’s license plate number. She was charged with second-degree murder and leaving the scene of a fatal accident, to which she pleaded not guilty. Boothe, who was not even supposed to be driving after her license was suspended on October 7, remains behind bars in Miami-Dade County. It is unclear when she is due back in court.