Robbery - Theft

93-year-old Florida woman dragged 20 feet while trying to stop carjacking before Mass

A 93-year-old Florida woman sustained minor injuries Thursday after she tried to stop two thieves from stealing her car but ended up being dragged 20 feet before a morning Mass in DeLand, Fla., police said.

Darius Matthews, 20, and David Leo Perkins III, 21, have been arrested in connection to the carjacking at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, according to Click Orlando.

One of the men reportedly grabbed the woman’s car keys and ran to the car with his crime partner. The woman attempted to stop the men from taking her car and grabbed the steering wheel but was dragged before she collapsed to the ground. The men got away and drove off.

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The woman sustained some injuries but was not transported to the hospital, DeLand Police Chief Jason D. Umberger said. 

“She sustained some minor injuries – cuts and scrapes and bruises,” Umberger told Click Orlando. “Thankfully, she wasn’t seriously injured, but she did sustain a couple of injuries.”

Volusia County police ended up finding the car and pursued the men briefly before they crashed the sedan into a backyard. The two men fled from the vehicle, but police caught them.

“I want to commend the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office and thank them for their assistance in this incident, and we look forward to continually working in conjunction with Sheriff [Michael] Chitwood and his deputies as we fight crime in the DeLand area,” Umberger said.

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Umberger said the two men did not have any weapons at the time of their arrest.

“This was more of a grab-and-go,” Umberger said.

Umberger said the crime was “disturbing” because the two men targeted an elderly woman at a holy place but believes residents should be more aware of their surroundings.

“I think, just as citizens of any area, we can’t stop the ill intentions of other people, but we can be as cognizant of our surroundings as we can, and just be aware of our surroundings from just a general safety standpoint," Umberger said.