An East Texas grandma is gaining national celebrity for her quick thinking. KLTV 7 first talked to 75 year old Mary Smyth on Tuesday. Mary was carjacked at a Tyler Brookshires, and fought back by spraying the suspected carjacker with gasoline.More >>
A change of plans Tuesday night for an East Texas woman. Dressed and on her way to a party, she found herself at the mercy of a suspected carjacker. The carjacking happened around 4:00 a.m. at the Brookshires Gas Station in Tyler's Bergfeld Center. Police later caught up with the car at Highway 14 and I-20. More >>
Breaking news at this hour. Around 4:00 p.m., Tyler Police took a man into custody, they believe was involved in a carjacking. More >>
Surveillance video from the day an East Texas woman was carjacked has now been released. On Tuesday, 75 year old Mary Smyth doused a man with gasoline as he attempted to take her car. Friday, for the first time we got to see the surveillance video from that afternoon. KLTV showed Smyth the video.
It's a few minutes before 4 o'clock on Tuesday. The surveillance video from Brookshire at Bergfeld Center that overlooks the parking lot. Detective Kevin Mobley with the Tyler Police Department walks us through the video.
"Stricker walks across the parking lot. He walks in front of a few vehicles. The description was pretty accurate given by Mrs. Smyth. He is carrying a duffle bag in his left hand," says Detective Mobley.
After Stricker walks out of frame from that camera, a different camera picks up this angle.
"Now through the parking lot to the fueling station. Where he possible removed the knife before he got to fueling station. That's going to be the last station on the north side and that's where Mrs. Smyth's vehicle was at the time," says Detective Mobley.
After 75 year old Mary Smyth douses Stricker with fuel, he quickly drives away. Then Mary and the other witness go towards the cashier station. We showed Mary the surveillance video for the first time.
"It is a different prospective than I had, because I truly thought he came from the bus stop. He could have chosen anyone but he chose the wrong one," says Mary.
Even though, Mary was not injured, police do not recommend fighting back.
"You should not put your life in jeopardy over any kind of property. If the person wants the property go ahead and give it to them and protect yourself first," says Detective Mobley.
"I don't know it was automatic instinct I guess," says Mary.
Mary says the whole experience just seems like a dream.
The suspected carjacker, John Clay Stricker, Jr. of Gladewater, is in the Smith County Jail, charged with aggravated robbery.