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Mom Ebony Wilkerson, Who Drove Kids Into Ocean, Is Ordered Committed

A Florida judge on Tuesday ordered Ebony Wilkerson — the mother who drove her children into the Atlantic Ocean in March — to be committed to a state mental hospital.

Circuit Judge Leah R. Case found that Wilkerson met the legal standard of being “manifestly dangerous to herself and others.” Wilkerson was taken into custody and will be held temporarily in jail, said Ludi Lelis, a spokeswoman for the 7th Judicial Circuit.

Bystanders charged into the water off Daytona Beach, Florida, and freed the children — ages 10, 9 and 3 — after Wilkerson steered her minivan into the surf.

Wilkerson, 33, had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity after prosecutors agreed to drop charges of attempted murder. Her court-appointed lawyer had argued that she was stable enough to get conditional release.

Wilkerson was released from jail in May on the condition that she have no contact with the three children, who are in state custody. She gave birth in jail to a baby boy, who is with his father.

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— Erin McClam