West Palm Beach Police Department hailed a 9-year-old as a hero after bravely jumping into action as her mother was being attacked and robbed.
This incident was caught on a surveillance camera outside of the Sabor Tropical Supermarket in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Nov. 2. You can see the suspect hiding behind what looks to be a propane tank storage cage. He quickly runs after a woman, knocks her to the ground, and attempts to steal her purse.
That’s when the woman’s 9-year-old daughter sprung into action and started punching the suspect in the face. She was also knocked down during the struggle. That’s when the mother let go of the purse, and the suspect ran off. But the daughter got up and chased him about four houses down until her mother was able to stop her.
The suspect got away with a cellphone, gum, several bank cards, a Coach wallet, $40 cash, and her Florida concealed carry permit. Police caught up with the suspect two days later, and he was charged with robbery and battery.
— WPTV (@WPTV) November 18, 2021
This little girl was courageous by protecting her mother. But things could have ended up a lot worse. Luckily, neither her mother nor she was injured even after being knocked to the ground.
“I wouldn’t recommend that you confront an individual like that, but in the heat of the moment, things happen,” said West Palm Beach Police Chief Frank Adderley, a former chief in Fort Lauderdale.
Chief Adderley honored a 9-year old child today for bravery as she ran to her mother’s defense to fend off a brazen robber. An #arrest was swiftly made in this case.
The West Palm Beach Police Foundation presented the child with a token of appreciation. pic.twitter.com/r9tz8PoacW
— West Palm Beach Police Department (@WestPalmPD) November 18, 2021
Something else to note is that the mother had a concealed carry permit. I don’t know if she carries on-body or wasn’t carrying that day. But if she had been carrying a gun in her purse, the attack happened so fast while she was loading groceries, she would have had no time to access her firearm. And the suspect could have gotten away with a gun as well as everything else. This is one of the reasons that we recommend carrying on-body if possible.
And lastly, situational awareness. Parking lots are transitional spaces, and these are where a lot of attacks like these take place. Most people aren’t paying attention as they get in or out of their cars, whether they are loading groceries or getting a child into the car. Or they just have their heads buried in their phone from the moment they walk out of the store to when they get in their car. You have to be paying attention, especially to places people can be hiding, like around a propane tank cage.
For more on situational awareness, check out our two-part article below.