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Domestic dispute on highway leaves unsuspecting driver dead, son injured

UPDATE: The Harris County Sheriff's Office reports Tuesday morning that ​2-year-old Alejandro "A.J." Vercher died of his injuries from the accident. Investigators with the Harris County district attorney's office and the HCSO continue to work on the case.

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A violent marital dispute is to blame for a tragic weekend crash that left a woman dead and her preschool-aged son in critical condition.

Harris County officials say that Emil McMahon was allegedly attempting to run his wife off FM 1943 in his Chevy Silverado pickup Sunday morning.

Just before 11 a.m., the husband swerved into oncoming traffic near Baytown and collided with a Nissan sedan driven by Tania M. Vercher, an area events photographer. Vercher's young child was strapped in a forward-facing car seat at the center of the backseat.

"I heard the roar of an engine, so I turned around and saw this truck lose control and start spinning sideways." 

"I heard the roar of an engine, so I turned around and saw this truck lose control and start spinning sideways," witness Chris McCoy tells KTRK Channel 13.

He saw the truck burst in flames and dashed to the sedan to rescue the child, who was taken to Memorial Hermann–Texas Medical Center with serious injuries.

"At that point, I went back to try to get the mother out, but was advised not to," McCoy says. "Whatever it was in the truck, I guess it was bullets, started popping off . . . Everybody was told to clear the area."

Vercher died of her injuries at the scene, while McMahon and his wife left the incident relatively unscathed.

According to the Harris County Sheriff's Office, charges will be filed against McMahon pending the results of blood tests taken after the crash.

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