PITTSBORO, N.C. (WNCN/AP) — A Cary woman charged with attempted first-degree murder and intentional child abuse had her case continued until February 2017 on Monday morning.
According to warrants, five people at Jordan Lake saw Leonora Cillay drive her car off a boat ramp with her 6-year-old son inside the car on May 14.
Guy Larry Plotz told investigators he saw a woman in a silver sedan parked at the Seafort boat ramp. The woman then drove the car toward the water at a high rate of speed and plunged into the water.
Plotz raced toward the water but the car was already past the dock.
At that point, pontoon boat captain David James Caviness, according to the search warrants, saw what happened and positioned his boat to try to move the car back toward the shore.
Caviness was able to pull Cillay and her son out of the vehicle as it sank into the lake.
“Caviness could see Cillay in the driver’s side front seat with her arms around her child, who was also in the driver’s side front seat facing Cillay,” the warrants said.
Caviness reached his hand through the sunroof, but Cillay refused help and closed Caviness’ hand in the sunroof. Somehow the sunroof opened and Caviness pulled Cillay out despite her resistance. He also noticed liquor bottles in the car.
With the car sinking and filling with water, the back window broke and water began to rush over the boy. Caviness cleared out the glass, getting cut in the process, and pulled the child from the car.
He handed the child to Plotz, who was on the dock.
The warrants said a note was left on the shore, along with a set of keys.
Cillay told investigators that she believed an “organization” was after her son and that she did the best she could do for her son.
Officials said the mother had previously been treated for mental health issues in her home country of England.
The mother was scheduled to appear in Chatham County court on Monday, but authorities failed to bring her to the courthouse from jail, so she did not appear in court and her case was continued until Feb. 27, 2017.
Cillay is in the custody of the Chatham County Sheriff’s Office. She is being held under a $1,040,000 secured bond.