A 29-year-old man was wandering an Ohio neighborhood with a remote control and a made-up story about a missing drone, asking children for help, police said.
On a Thursday night in June, Candy Arthurs learned that Kristopher Amos, who turned out to be a registered sex offender, was with her 7-year-old grandson and 8-year-old granddaughter in a Columbus, Ohio, alley, police told the Columbus Dispatch.
When she confronted him, he pulled out a large knife and stabbed her in the heart, authorities said.
“Ten minutes go by and I hear screams of my children,” the children’s mother, Amanda Gibson, wrote on a GoFundMe page for their grandmother.
In the early hours of Wednesday — six weeks after the June 23 attack — the 45-year-old grandmother died from her injuries, police said in a news release.
Amos has been charged with murder and is being held in the Franklin County jail. His public defender, Thomas Port, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Washington Post.
Amos, who has a biblical scripture tattooed on his hand, made up the story about a lost drone to solicit help from neighborhood children, police said in the news release.
His tattoo, police said, references Mark 11:25:
And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.
Police told the Columbus Dispatch that Amos stabbed Arthurs in the chest and her 7-year-old grandson in the shoulder. Arthurs “pushed the children to safety,” police told the newspaper, and the three ran back to the house.
Arthurs, police said, crawled up the front steps and quickly collapsed.
“My son was covered in blood,” Gibson told ABC affiliate WSYX. “My mom plopped down by the door. She said, ‘Call 911.’ She was covered in blood.
The 7-year-old was treated for a stab wound and has since recovered.
Arthurs was rushed to a hospital, where she made it through a four-hour surgery and had spent weeks trying to survive, Gibson said. Gibson, who created the GoFundMe page to raise money for her mother’s medical expenses, wrote that Arthurs was “a fighter.”
On Wednesday, Gibson wrote on her Facebook page that she was at a loss:
“I feel like my heart has been ripped out … I love you mom an your always gonna be in my thoughts i cant believe i gotta go on without you.”
Gibson could not immediately be reached for comment by The Post.
A Franklin County sheriff’s official confirmed that Amos, who lives near the family’s home, was convicted several years ago of child enticement and forced to register as a Tier 1 sex offender for 15 years, though his name is not listed in the public database. The official said his sex offender designation is set to expire in 2029.
The Columbus Dispatch reported that Amos was convicted of child enticement with a sexual motivation in 2010 and 2011.
During the first incident, Amos tried to lure children into the shower area of a YMCA, according to the national sex-offender registry.
In addition to murder, Amos was charged with felony assault in the slaying. He is due in court Aug. 12 for a preliminary hearing, according to court records.
“I hope he gets what’s coming to him,” Gibson told WSYX.
She told the Columbus Dispatch that “what hurts the most” is that her mother was “murdered helping someone.”
“My mother always told me she would die for them, and that’s exactly what she did,” Gibson said. “She’s my hero.”