It’s not the most likely time or place for a car-jacking–broad daylight on a Thursday afternoon in Preston Center–but that didn’t matter much to the guy who stole James Gross’s car. (Bear with me ’til the end… This gets awesome.)
Gross, a 24-year-old student at Sanford-Brown College, was walking to his car, enjoying a Jamba Juice on his way to class, when a man asked to talk to him. The man was clearly on something, Gross said, so he kept walking and got into his 1993 Honda Accord. The man proceeded to stand in the middle of the street behind the car, yelling while Gross tried to maneuver the Accord out of its parking space and around the man without hitting him. He managed to do so and pulled up behind a line of cars on Westchester Drive, waiting to turn into Douglas.
“He ran toward my car right when I’m pulling away –my windows were down because I don’t have any A/C–and he opened the door and yanked me into the street,” Gross said.
Except for the getting-pulled-out-of-my-car thing, I can relate so far: I too have a crappy car which has gone for long stretches without A/C. And I too enjoy Jamba Juice. But this is where he loses me. Instead of laying on the pavement, licking his wounds and mourning the loss of his vehicle, as I would have done, he gets up, runs back to his car, and tries to throw the carjacker out.
Unfortunately the carjacker knew how to drive a stick shift and got going quickly. So Gross, clinging to the car, punches the dude in the face several times before letting go once the car picks up too much speed. (“I’d rather not lose my life,” he explains. Of course not.) And he watches his only means of transportation speed away.
“My reaction was I couldn’t believe he got me out of my car,” Gross said. “I just shouldn’t have let happen. I mean, I’m a football player. It’s just a man thing.”
This story does have a happy ending, if not for Gross’s thigh, which suffered a pretty nasty asphalt burn, he says. But the thief was arrested last night in Euless for shoplifting, and the 1993 Accord is waiting for Gross in the Dallas Police Department Auto Pound.
I’m not saying that, if you get car-jacked, you should hang from a moving car while punching the thief in the face. In fact, it’s probably a very bad idea in most cases. I’m just saying it’s pretty awesome. Kudos to you, James Gross.
I have a call in to the Euless Police Department to get the name/mug shot of the alleged thief. Updates when/if they come.