LIFE

Tough 78-Year-Old Grandma Lunges On Top Of Thief When He Tries To Steal Her Purse At Supermarket

by Emerald Pellot
Emerald Pellot graduated summa cum laude from New York University with a degree in Writing & Popular Culture. She worked as Senior Editor of College Candy for 2 years, covering feminism, popular culture, and college life before joining LittleThings in 2015. Based in New York City, Emerald covers a wide range of topics from human interest pieces to celebrity news.

Mrs. Jeanette might be 78 years old, but the West Philadelphia senior puts up a mean fight. While leaving a supermarket, she was accosted by a purse thief.

The man grabbed her handbag, which had $100 in cash, a checkbook, credit cards, and a surprise for children at her church.

“I had 10 tickets to the Please Touch Museum and each ticket admitted four, and that was one of our planned excursions,” Mrs. Jeanette told CBS Philadelphia.

When the man robbed her, Mrs. Jeanette fought back. “I sort of lunged at him,” she said. “I jumped on. I know it was ridiculous or a bad move, in hindsight, but I was just protecting whatever is mine, which is normal for anybody to do.”

When she fell off, he gave up and, luckily, she wasn’t seriously injured. Detectives said the thief most likely cased the store, believing Mrs. Jeannette was an easy target.

“Even though I’m a senior, I’m a bit of a fighter,” she said.

Although she feels shaken by the situation, the supermarket said if anyone feels unsafe, they can ask a manager to escort them to their car.

“It’s invasive. It’s very unnerving. It rocks your foundation, your safety,” she said. “You feel vulnerable.”

While the altercation was unpleasant, Mrs. Jeanette was also grateful that the suspect had the empathy to stop and leave rather than fight back.

“If anything, I thank him for that,” she said. “But the road he’s traveling is a dead end.”

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Footage and photo provided by KYW Philadelphia

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