Officials with the West Palm Beach Police Department in Florida have honored a nine-year-old girl for her bravery after she was seen on video punching and chasing a robber who attacked her mom.
According to Miami Herald, the November 2 incident occurred outside the parking lot of a supermarket. Journee Nelson’s mother, Danielle Mobley, was loading groceries into their car when she was confronted by the robber.
Surveillance footage shows the robber, identified as 29-year-old Demetrius Jackson, walking towards Mobley before pushing her to the ground in an attempt to snatch her purse. That is when Journee springs into action.
As Journee’s mother and the robber struggle for her purse, the minor is seen emerging from behind the vehicle and repeatedly punching the suspect in the face. “I fought back. I had to save my mom,” Journee said, per WSVN.
The suspect later pushed Journee to the ground. Mobley said she subsequently let go of her purse, and the suspect then took to his heels with the stolen property. But Journee went after him. “She actually jumped up and chased him four houses down the block with me chasing her, calling her back,” Mobley recalled at a news conference, Miami Herald reported.
Per Jackson’s arrest affidavit, the stolen purse’s contents included Mobley’s Samsung cellphone, multiple bank cards, a Coach wallet, $40 in cash, and her concealed carry permit.
“I wouldn’t recommend that you confront an individual like that but in the heat of the moment things happen,” West Palm Beach Police Chief Frank Adderley, said. “I bet he was shocked when she hit him right in his face, because you can definitely tell on the videotape that he was not expecting that and her actions were perfect timing in this particular situation and I think she hit him pretty hard.”
For her heroics, Journee was honored with a medal, a certificate, and a gift card from Target. “I’m very proud of her that was her initial reaction,” Mobley said about her daughter’s actions. “I wish we, sometimes, things could be a little different because she is still dealing with this mentally.”
Jackson has since been charged with robbery and battery.