CLEVELAND- The FOX 8 I-Team has obtained video of a 71-year-old woman telling Cleveland police how she got carjacked at gunpoint while shopping, and we’ve learned a few citizens are now organizing a new way to help people shop in groups and protect themselves.
The attack on the senior citizen happened a few weeks ago at West 140th and Puritas. Days later, a 58-year-old woman got carjacked in the same shopping complex.
And several days ago, on the east side, video shows an attacker punch a 62-year-old woman carrying groceries.
These kinds of incidents have led Lynn Foulkrod and a few friends to take action. They’re putting together a new organization to help people shop for groceries in groups. The project is aimed at senior citizens, but not only them.
Lynn said, "Used to be older people were off limits.” She described how the new plan would work, saying, "We'll just tell everybody where to meet, and everybody meets up. We go in together. We come out together. Everybody watches everybody get into their cars together."
Police have said for a long time, it’s always better for senior citizens to have someone with them when they go out. While the new shopping safety group is just getting organized, interest in it is already exploding. Senior citizen groups and neighborhood groups are saying, ‘Come talk to us about it.’
Lynn Foulkrod hopes to firm up the plans and announce details soon. She came up with the idea because her dad used to take older people shopping. She said, “It’s just a safety in numbers kind of thing.”
On the police video, the 71-year-old victim told an officer, "I was determined. I wasn't giving it up. Then he pulled something out, and it looked like a gun. That's when I gave up.”
A witness told the officer, "They had a gun in their hand pointed right at her neck…”
We’ve reached out to Cleveland police to find out where things stand with the investigations into the recent cases, and we’re waiting to hear back. CrimeStoppers has offered reward money for tips leading to an arrest.
The citizens are trying to make it harder to go after the easy targets.
As soon as organizers are ready to move forward with their project, we’ll let you know how it could help you or your neighbors and how to volunteer to help.