GARFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio (WJW) – 71-year old-Rosa Jimenez says she has been looking over her shoulder since being the target of a frightening carjacking late Saturday afternoon.
“I feel depressed, angry, nervous,” she said.
She says a young woman ran up to her as she was getting out of her car outside the St. Rita Apartments on the campus of the Jennings Center for Older Adults in Garfield Heights.
Rosa says the woman shoved her, grabbed her keys, jumped into her car and sped away with a second car following close behind.
Inside Rosa’s car was her purse. The carjacker had her keys, cell phone, ID and credit cards.
“I was scared, especially because they had the keys to my place,” she said.
When Rosa’s son learned that her car had been taken, he and his daughter began helping police track her cell phone online and discovered that the car was outside a phone store in Cleveland.
Police quickly responded to the store and surrounded the car, but by then, the carjacker and her accomplices were gone.
Rosa and her family are now raising questions about safety of the Jennings campus, but the chief marketing officer at Jennings calls the carjacking an isolated incident.
“We are reminding folks about important security practices and talking about the multi-layered approach that we have to security and working with the Garfield Heights Police Department on an ongoing basis,” said Lisa Brazytis.
The management at Jennings says video from their surveillance cameras helped identify a suspect in the carjacking, but Rosa says cameras do not ensure the safety of residents. She is urging the management company to hire security guards to patrol the campus.
“It happened, the damage is done, so a camera is not helping. Maybe if they see a car patrolling around, it will make them think twice,” she said.
While still frightened by what she experienced, Rosa says she is also grateful that she was not seriously injured.
“Thankful to God, yes, and that’s the first thing my son said. ‘Mom, you were one of the lucky ones,’” she said.
On Wednesday afternoon, detectives in Garfield Heights revealed that they have issued an arrest warrant for the suspect in the carjacking.