COLTON (CBSLA.com) — Police were searching for a grandmother and convicted attempted murderer in connection with a stabbing attack on three of her family members Monday morning at a Colton apartment complex that left the suspect’s young granddaughter dead, authorities said.
Nicole Darrington-Clark, 43, is considered armed and dangerous, Colton police report.
Officers were called to the 1400 block of East Santo Antonio Drive at 9:10 a.m. in response to a 911 call from the suspect’s daughter. According to police, the caller told emergency dispatchers that Clark had stabbed her and her two daughters — Clark’s granddaughters.
Officers arrived to find one of the victims, Clark’s 18-month-old granddaughter, dead at the scene. The other two surviving victims — Clark’s daughter and her other granddaughter – had suffered multiple stab wounds. They were taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition.
“I just noticed her (Clark) with a knife, she had blood over her blouse,” neighbor Tim Hill told CBS2. “The knife was bloody, and then her daughter was bloody, even more bloody… and that’s when I pushed her (Clark) away saying, ‘you’re not coming in my apartment.'”
Hill said the moment he mentioned the word “police,” Clark fled.
Clark’s daughter was screaming for her children, Hill said.
“She was hysterical, saying, ‘go get my babies, go get my babies, she’s gonna kill my babies,'” Hill said.
Hill said he ran into the victim’s apartment to find the granddaughter lifeless on the couch. He then searched the apartment and found her 6-year-old sister hiding in the closet.
“Get to the bedroom, I find her in the closet, shaking and petrified,” Hill said.
Hill said he saw Clark clutching a knife as she fled.
Nearby surveillance video immediately after the attack appeared to show Clark’s black 2013 Hyundai Sonata with California license plate #7TQL009 driving away. Clark is homeless and lives out of the car, neighbors told CBS2.
Clark has a violent criminal history. She pleaded guilty to attempted murder in a previous attack on her children in 2005, according to the San Bernardino Sun.
In December 2005, Clark stabbed her son and pushed her daughter out of a moving car in West Covina. In October 2006, she plead guilty to two counts of attempted murder, but was ruled insane and sent to Patton State Hospital, the Sun reported. She was released from custody in 2010, a police spokesperson confirmed.
Police are looking for suspect Nicole Darrington-Clark. (Photo courtesy Colton PD)
Police described Clark as African-American, 5-foot-9, 210 pounds with short black hair and brown eyes.
San Bernardino County Sheriff’s detectives are assisting Colton police with the search and investigation. Anyone with information on Clark’s whereabouts should call police at 909-370-5000.