PHOENIX — Half an hour after putting her two children to bed, a Phoenix mother discovered they were gone. Frantic and fearful they were kidnapped, she called police, who spotted her car near her apartment and tried to pull it over.
After it swerved and crashed into a pole, police found the driver was the woman’s 8-year-old son, and her 6-year-old daughter was a front-seat passenger.
The girl died early Thursday of injuries suffered in the Wednesday night crash, while her brother suffered an ankle injury that didn’t appear serious, police said.
Police identified the girl as Aaliyah Felder. They said her seatbelt was not fastened and the airbag in front of her did not deploy.
After the crash, two patrol officers ran up to the crashed car, ‘‘thinking it’s a kidnap, that there’s a bad guy in there,’’ a police official said.
Instead they found the children in their pajamas and the girl seriously injured.