A Florida woman is accused of drowning one child after trying to poison another, in what she described as accordance with a local pastor's sermon, WPEC-TV reported on Wednesday.
Kimberly Dawn Lucas is currently being held in Palm Beach County Jail in connection with the death of her former partner's 2-year-old daughter and the attempted killing of the child's 10-year-old brother at their home in Jupiter on Monday.
Investigators said Lucas attended a sermon by Metropolitan Community Church pastor Lea Brown this past Sunday that covered the Biblical story of Abraham readying himself to sacrifice his son on orders from God, only to be stopped by God at the last minute.
Lucas is accused of trying the same thing -- trying to kill the two young children she was helping to raise, but she wrote in a suicide note that God didn't step in and stop her, at least in the case of the 2-year-old girl. Lucas' own suicide attempt failed. Police reportedly found Lucas' message (PDF) typed on a computer in the home.
"In YOUR WORDS "WHEN YOU ARE LAYING IN BED AT NIGHT REMEMBER YOU F*CKING DID THIS TO YOURSELF!" the note stated. "Lea's sermon really, really touched me yesterday but God never told me to stop. Hell is what we [go] through on Earth. Enjoyed your life with possiblego [sic] out without us, he manage but give you finally what you what want because apparently over the past 20 years I was not able to. Love you Always Kimberly.
Brown confirmed to WPEC that the children and both women attended her service, and that her sermon covered Genesis 22, in which God challenges Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac "as a burnt offering."
Abraham follows the instruction, taking the boy to a mountain, then laying him on an altar in preparation for the sacrifice. At the last second, God orders Abraham to spare the child instead, having demonstrated his fear by being willing to kill Isaac for Him.
"It's what I was called on to preach," Brown said about her sermon. "There's no way anyone could have predicted this."
New Times Broward Palm Beach reported that, according to police, Lucas convinced the boy to take pills to "make him grow faster." He then laid down on his bed due to feelings of dizziness. The boy then reportedly woke up to find Lucas passed out on the bed near him. Traces of benzodiazepine, an anti-anxiety medication, were later found in the boy's urine.
However, investigators said, the girl refused to take the pills from Lucas. After the boy woke up and looked for her, he found the bathroom door locked. He was able to force it open with a knife, but then found his sister "submerged in the bathtub." Despite his calling paramedics, the girl was pronounced dead at the scene.
Lucas was initially hospitalized in critical condition before being imprisoned on Tuesday.
Watch WPEC's report, as posted on Wednesday, below.
[Image: "The Sacrifice of Isaac," by Caravaggio, via Wikipedia Commons]