Community helping Waukesha mother stabbed in back by estranged husband

NOW: Community helping Waukesha mother stabbed in back by estranged husband

WAUKESHA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- A community is coming together as a Waukesha mother who was stabbed at a weekend barbeque continues her road to recovery.

Neighbors say they still can't get the picture of Griselle Cruz being stabbed in front of their own homes out of their minds.

It was a traumatic experience, not only for the family but for people who live along the quiet dead-end street where it all happened.

"They were having a party over there and then I heard this strange kind of scream." An outdoor bbq on Saturday in Waukesha took a very dark turn. Waukesha Police dash cam video shows the aftermath of the chaotic scene on Rock Street.

According to a criminal complaint, Griselle Cruz's estranged husband, Javier Cruz, showed up to the party and stabbed her in the back with a 9-inch kitchen knife.

"My roommate saw her run across the street and saw the knife still in her back and then she collapsed on our front lawn," said Stuart Monk, a neighbor.

It happened in front of their children, neighbors, and other kids on the block.

"He pretty much ran her down with no regard for any of the witnesses," said Monk.

17-year-old Kadejah Van Heesch babysits the Cruz children.

"I honestly can't wrap my head around this. Why would someone do this to their own family," said Van Heesch.

When Van Heesch heard what happened, she and her mom immediately set up a fund with Waukesha State Bank for the mother's medical bills and other expenses to help Cruz's children.

"This is a mom that has been working hard, she loves her kids," said Van Heesch.

Javier Cruz is charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide. He is due back in court on Friday. Friends say Javier was a controlling and violent husband. Police say Javier admitted to the crime and told them he was mad about paying child support.

The Van Heesch's hope their fundraiser will help this struggling Waukesha mother and her children piece their lives back together.

"My focus is the kids. To hope that they know they're loved, that they have support."

Family friends say Griselle is still in serious condition but that she is progressing.

If you'd like to help, donations can be made out to:

Waukesha State Bank

Attn: The Cruz Benefit Fund

PO Box 648

Waukesha, WI 53187-0648

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