A group of neighborhood Good Samaritans saved a Fairfax mother and her child after a man suddenly jumped into their car and ordered her to drive.
In a report filed on the ABC 7 website, the terrifying incident happened at the intersection of Poinsettia Place and Willoughby Avenue on the afternoon of Wednesday, February 12th. The young mother started screaming, which prompted eyewitnesses in the vicinity to come running to help.
Eyewitness Rishi Chitkara told ABC reporter Eileen Frere, “He was forceful, and it was very clear he was not supposed to be in that car.” When Chitkara and others came to help, they noticed that the woman had a child who was secured in the back of the vehicle in a car safety seat.
Chitkara and the other Good Samaritans held the man in the car while others attempted to comfort the mother until police arrived on the scene.
On cellphone video, the child can be heard through her tears, saying, “We were just going to visit grandma.”
Chitkara believes that the reaction of those nearby to help at a time when it was needed most served to restore his faith in humanity.
Los Angeles Police Department officers arrived on the scene to handcuff the suspect. He was taken to an area hospital under suspicion of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
LAPD later released the suspect because he had not been violent, was not carrying a weapon, didn’t threaten the victim, and had no outstanding warrants. Chitkara and other residents of the Fairfax neighborhood indicated shock that police had released the suspect back out onto the streets.