An armed suspect picked the wrong man to carjack. Unbeknownst to the carjacker, the motorist wasn’t an ordinary victim, and when the suspect pulled him out of his vehicle, the tables quickly turned.
An armed carjacker picked the wrong motorist to steal from in Philadelphia, as the victim — a 59-year-old corrections officer — had been trained for a moment like this. The victim told responding officers he had departed a friend’s house just before 11 p.m. and entered his white Toyota Avalon sedan, Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small told WCAU-TV.
The victim was then pulled from his vehicle at gunpoint, Small noted to the station, adding that the victim “was carjacked.” The carjacker was wearing a surgical mask and hoodie, WPVI-TV reported. However, instincts apparently kicked in for the off-duty corrections officer, and he wasn’t about to let the crook make off with his Toyota Avalon unscathed.
As the carjacker got into the vehicle, the victim pulled out his own gun and opened fire at the suspect, firing at least five shots, Small told WCAU. That’s when the carjacker sped away in the stolen car, but less than a half-hour later, police found the stolen vehicle about a half-mile away, investigators said. Evidence at the scene suggested the corrections officer had done some damage to the carjacker. “That vehicle was found with five bullet holes in it and a lot of fresh blood inside the driver’s seat and some on the center console,” Small said.
It was also reported bullets penetrated the driver’s side window and door as well as the windshield while it was confirmed the vehicle indeed was the corrections officer’s. Noting the fresh blood, the investigators knew the suspect needed medical attention, and their next move was to search local hospitals. Sure enough, that seemed to pan out as a man showed up at a hospital with at least two gunshot wounds to his arms, Small reported, adding that investigators were trying to confirm if the wounded man is the carjacker.
“There’s a possibility that that 21-year-old shooting victim may be the individual that committed this robbery carjacking,” Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small noted to WPVI at the time. Luckily, the corrections officer came out of the ordeal unharmed. It was also reported that the police would be checking DNA evidence to see if there was a match with the hospitalized individual.
This case is similar to another duo of crooks who decided to rob the wrong people. “No joke: Robbers walk into [a] bar full of off-duty cops,” New York Post reported. “Joseph McInnis III, 21, and 22-year-old Tyree McCoy robbed a Maryland bar filled with dozens of off-duty officers there for a cop retirement party, WBAL-TV reported.”
The armed thieves entered the take-out portion of Monaghan’s Pub in Woodlawn, Maryland. They held up an employee at gunpoint before running off with an undisclosed amount of cash, police said, according to the news outlet. “At that time, the person who had been behind the counter knew that there was a retirement party for a police officer happening, so they went into the other portion and alerted the officers to the fact that they had just been involved in an armed robbery,” Baltimore County Police Officer Jennifer Peach said.
Off-duty officers at the shindig quickly ran out and took the men into custody. They were charged with armed robbery and possession of a handgun and were being held without bail at the Baltimore County Detention Center, according to the report. “I’m sure that they weren’t planning on there being a large room filled with police officers,” Officer Peach said.
Monaghan’s Pub owner Jack Milani says it’s odd that someone would attempt a robbery because a precinct station is across the street. During shift changes, he said, there are a lot of squad cars coming and going into the station, and he said many of the officers are regular customers.
“It’s kind of odd you would even attempt it,” Milani said. “Officers are always in here. There was a decent amount of them.” Cpl. Shawn Vinson says the party was for David Neral, who had been with the Baltimore Police Department since 1988. It just goes to show that intellectually challenged criminals aren’t going away, but thankfully the “good guys” won, and as these two cases demonstrate, crime doesn’t pay.