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Woman accused of shooting drivers on Florida interstate says she was directed by God

A Georgia woman who allegedly injured two drivers on a Florida highway Monday told people that God directed her to carry out the shootings “in connection with” the solar eclipse, authorities said.

Taylon Nichelle Celestine, 22, was arrested on Interstate 10 near mile marker 96 during a criminal traffic stop after being suspected of injuring two drivers a short time earlier, according to a release from the Florida Highway Patrol .

Before the shooting began, the highway patrol said, Celestine “had recently left a local hotel and told staff that she was going on a shooting spree, led by ‘God’ in connection with the solar eclipse.”

She was arrested and booked into the Holmes County Jail on charges of attempted murder, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and improper discharge of a firearm, according to the Highway Patrol.

An AR-15 rifle and a 9mm handgun were found in the Georgia-registered Dodge Challenger that Celestine was driving, the highway patrol said.

It was unclear Monday evening whether Célestine had found a lawyer who could comment on her behalf.

The shooting occurred near Bonifay, about 80 kilometers north of Panama City.

After making the comment at the hotel, Celestine entered the highway near mile marker 112 and drove westbound, the highway patrol said. Less than five miles after entering the highway, Celestine allegedly fired a gun and struck another vehicle several times.

“The driver was hit by fragments of glass from the window and was grazed on the arm by a bullet; however, he was able to steer his vehicle onto the shoulder of the road, away from the suspect,” according to the highway patrol.

As she continued west, Celestine shot at another vehicle near mile marker 107, the highway patrol said.

The driver was hit in the neck but survived and was being treated in hospital, he said.

A total solar eclipse, nicknamed the Great North American Eclipse because of its long path over North America, was visible Monday in the skies of 15 U.S. states, parts of Mexico and eastern Canada.

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