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Eager Salamander


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'Maybe we've redefined inhumanity'

Motorist arrested in bizarre death


Copyright 2002 Houston Chronicle Rio Grande Valley Bureau

A homeless Fort Worth man may have died a slow and painful death last fall after being struck by a car and left in a garage with his head lodged in the broken windshield of the car that struck him.

"We've seen a lot of strange cases around here, but this is different," said Richard Alpert, the Tarrant County assistant district attorney who plans to prosecute the driver of the car for murder. "Maybe we've just redefined inhumanity here."

Taken into custody on Wednesday was 25-year-old Chante Mallard, a nurse's aide. She told police she was drinking and using the drug Ecstasy when she accidentally struck Gregory Glenn Biggs, 37, at an intersection near her home.

The impact tossed him onto the hood of her car, broke his legs and sent his head crashing through the windshield. Mallard said she panicked and drove home, concealing her car in the garage with Biggs still alive and curled on top of the hood.

Police said she told them that over the next two days she occasionally went out to check on Biggs and each time he pleaded with her for help. She said she apologized to him but did nothing to help.

Biggs' head remained lodged in the windshield, with his legs bent and partly over the car's roof. He either bled to death slowly or died from shock, authorities said.

A source told police Mallard drove home, went inside and had sex with her boyfriend, then went to the garage to find Biggs still alive, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.

"I'm going to have to come up with a new word for it," Alpert said Thursday. "Cruel doesn't say enough." He said other charges may be filed against Mallard or potential accomplices.

After Biggs died, Mallard told police, some friends helped her extract his body from the windshield, placed it in the trunk of another car and dumped it in a park, where it was found on Oct. 27.

Mallard's attorney, Mike Heiskell, told the Associated Press that his client is guilty only of failing to stop and render aid -- not murder. He disputed the police account.

Heiskell said the victim died a few hours after Mallard drove home and was in her garage no more than 24 hours. He said her friends advised her not to call for help and suggested dumping Biggs' body.

"She is not the monster that police and prosecutors are making her out to be," Heiskell said. "She was simply a frightened, emotionally distraught young woman who had an accident, panicked and made a wrong choice."

From the beginning, police suspected Biggs was a victim of a hit-and-run, but the case went unsolved until an acquaintance of Mallard's tipped them that she might have been involved in an unreported accident. The informant said she had revealed "bits" about the incident at a party, when friends asked her why she was not driving her car.

During a search of Mallard's house late in February, police found her 1997 Chevrolet Cavalier parked in the garage with blood, hair and other evidence visible.

The seats had been removed and were in the back yard, where one of them had been burned.

She was arrested and initially charged with failure to stop and render aid, a charge that was upgraded to murder this week. Mallard was released after posting $10,000 bail. If convicted, she could be sentenced to a 99 years in prison and fined $10,000.

According to the autopsy report, Biggs, whose address was listed as a homeless shelter, had broken bones but did not suffer fatal internal injuries.

"If he had gotten medical attention, he probably would have survived," traffic investigator Sgt. John Fahrenthold told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

The newspaper also reported that Biggs' mother, Meredith Biggs, said she had not seen her son for several years and had recently been trying to find him.

Biggs' son, Brandon Glenn Biggs of Albany, said he holds no animosity toward Mallard.

The 19-year-old high school senior, who learned the details of his father's death while at school Thursday morning, said he would like to meet with Mallard.

"I'd just like to talk to her. Just ask questions and see why, to get a better understanding I suppose," he said.

At the time of the accident, the twice-divorced Biggs had been homeless about two years. The self-employed bricklayer had fallen on hard financial times, said his son.

"He ended up losing his truck because he couldn't make the payments," the son said. "When you're a bricklayer, you need a truck to haul your supplies around, so that was pretty much his career."

A dispute had left Biggs estranged from all other family members.

"I was the only one my dad talked to," the son said.

Brandon Biggs said he occasionally visited his father at a Fort Worth homeless shelter.

"We'd go eat or we'd go to the mall and walk around or go to the park," he said.

"I want people to understand that he was not just a piece of meat," Meredith Biggs said of her son. "He's loved and he was a kind and decent person. That's the main thing I want people to understand."





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yup, no need for two threads covering the same thing...besides, no reason to refer to women as bitches.

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