Metlakatla woman fatally struck 3-year-old son, brother with SUV, police say

Metlakatla is seen in the distance in 2020 from a turnout on Walden Point Road. (Eric Stone/KRBD)

A Metlakatla woman is in custody on murder charges, after local police say she killed her 3-year-old son and her adult brother last month by driving into them after an alcohol-fueled party.

Twenty-seven-year-old Alecia Henderson faces several charges including two counts each of second-degree murder and manslaughter. She was arrested Tuesday on a warrant in Metlakatla.

The charges stem from an April 22 party in the Southeast Alaska community, where local police say Henderson was drinking with several others. Her young son, the boy’s father, and other adult relatives were also there.

People at the party told police that Henderson became upset with her brother, 24-year-old James Henderson, when he took away the keys of her borrowed Nissan Pathfinder, and she allegedly took a swing at him. The boy’s father said she yelled at him by phone when he called to check on her.

Around 1:30 a.m., the boy, his father and Henderson’s brother were reportedly walking home from the party when Henderson allegedly drove a white Nissan Pathfinder SUV into the three of them. Police say surveillance video from a nearby school shows the Pathfinder turning its lights off and accelerating before impact.

James Henderson was taken to a local clinic and pronounced dead. The boy died the following evening after he was medevaced to Anchorage for his injuries. The boy’s father was also wounded but survived.

Henderson initially denied being behind the wheel but later admitted to thinking she had hit a car instead, according to a recorded phone call monitored by Alaska State Troopers.

Henderson was convicted of DUI in March of last year. About a decade ago, she was convicted of a misdemeanor assault charge. Henderson’s bail has been set at $250,000. Her first court appearance was scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.

An attorney for Henderson has not yet been assigned.

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