BROWARD (CBSMiami) – After several weeks on the run, accused of robbing and beating female Publix shoppers, Erica Abraham and her crew were being closed in on by law enforcement.
“I’m trying make you get away,” Abraham is heard saying on a Facebook Live video released Wednesday by the Broward State Attorney’s Office as part of the criminal case. “This is going down, man. I can’t do this. We going to jail.”
While Broward Sheriff’s deputies closed in on her, Abraham went on Facebook Live to stream her final moments of freedom. She was also on the phone with someone.
“They behind you right now, Erica?” a woman on the phone asked.
“Yes, they was,” Abraham responded.
“They gonna put ya’ll (expletive) on the news,” the woman said.
Abraham called out directions and looked back at the officers and a short time later was arrested.
“They gonna end up putting y’all on the news if you do a high speed chase,” the woman on the phone told her.
Abraham did get on the news – charged in several cases of pepper spraying, assaulting and robbing Publix customers, some elderly, in Plantation and other cities. For several weeks the crimes struck fear into people just doing their routine grocery shopping.
Jim Lewis is Erica Abraham’s attorney. He said Abraham admits her role in the crimes. He hadn’t seen this Facebook Live video until CBS4’s Carey Codd showed it to him.
“I think it’s a horrible trend and certainly it doesn’t do her any good,” Lewis said. “We understand people being outraged by it and thinking that she needs to be punished.”
Lewis said Abraham didn’t have much of a chance in life. He said her father, Eric, spent time in prison. Her uncle, Nevia, was convicted of the infamous slow speed chase in a postal vehicle through Miami in 2003. And her younger brother is accused of taking part in the Publix crimes with her and another juvenile female.
“Everybody going to jail and nobody really there when they needed to be there when she was growing up to try to guide her the right way,” Lewis said.
Abraham’s father confirmed to CBS4 News that just weeks before his daughter’s alleged crime spree another brother, Eric, was accused of driving a stolen car and hitting and killing a Parkland woman – Chris Weiner.
Lewis said Abraham is 8 and a half months pregnant and suffers from mental health problems. He hopes Abraham gets a second chance in life.
Her alleged victims however – scarred physically and mentally from the brutal attacks – might feel differently about that.
One victim told CBS4 News that she is struggling with her physical injuries and the loss of her sense of security in her community. The victim said she wants those responsible to pay for what they did.
Abraham is scheduled to have a court hearing Thursday to discuss some of her mental health issues.