Woman Arrested After Attempted Exorcism On Her Child

Humboldt County Booking Photo.

FERNDALE, Calif. (KFSM) —  A Northern California woman was arrested for attempted homicide after authorities said she attacked her 11-year-old daughter and claimed she was trying to perform an exorcism.

It happened at Centerville Beach, in Ferndale,  on Friday (June 16) morning, around 9 a.m.  Nearly a dozen people watched the alleged attack — and one man stepped in to help.

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office stated they got a 911 call from a man, John Marciel,  who said the mother had stripped the child naked, shoved handfuls of sand in the child’s eyes and mouth, and struck, bit and choked the child.

Marciel said the woman told him she was trying to remove the Demons from the child, according to the Sheriff’s Office statement.

The woman was identified by law enforcement as Kimberly Felder, 45, of Ferndale.

Marciel struggled with Felder, while Felder continued to hit the child in the head with a piece of driftwood. A short time later a Sheriff’s Deputy arrived and Felder was pulled from the child and placed in handcuffs, according to the Sheriff’s Office statement.

Marciel tended to the child while deputies controlled Felder.  Emergency Medical technicians arrived and transported the child to a hospital for treatment.

Felder was booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility for attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, felony child abuse, and aggravated mayhem.

“If it were not for the intervention and heroic actions of Marciel, it is very likely that the child would have been killed by Felder,” said the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office.

The Sheriff’s Office thanked Marciel for this help and will be requesting that he be recognized for the Red Cross Life Saving Award.

Ferndale is a coastal city in Humboldt County and is 260 miles north of San Francisco.