TOWSON, Md. - Merizia Saindor Baptiste broke down emotionally when detectives arrived at her home earlier today with news that her son had barricaded himself inside the ABC2 News building after ramming a stolen Ford F-550 truck through the front lobby.
She told ABC2 News that she and her husband came to this country from Haiti in 1999 in search of a better life for her family including her six children. She didn’t want to believe that her 27-year-old son Vladimir Baptiste was capable of causing such a panic.
Vladimir was apprehended by tactical police hours after crashing a truck into the WMAR-TV newsroom. Vladimir posted tweets of his barricade situation. (See below)
Police believed that Vladimir suffered from some sort of mental illness. Baltimore County Police Chief Jim Johnson said Valdimir began “ranting and raving incoherently” as officers closed in on Vladimir in a second floor editing suite in the WMAR-TV news station. He was transported to a medical center for evaluation.
Vladimir graduated from Parkville High School and was pursuing a career as an X-ray technician before he started to go down a dark path.
Merizia said Vladimir had a history of drug use beginning when he was 21 years old. She said he started hanging with the wrong crowd, which caused his life to start spiraling out of control. It remains unconfirmed if drugs played a role in the incident Tuesday.
Vladimir was in and out of rehab programs from much of his 20s, Merizia said. He was supposed to be at drug or rehab class Tuesday