By Roche Madden and Chris Pilcic, KTVI/FOX 2
ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis man is behind bars after police say he jacked a horse-drawn carriage and assaulted the driver and the horse. It happened late Tuesday night near 8th and Chestnut.
A driver and horse from St. Louis Carriage Company were the victims. Jenny Holzum is a spokeswoman for the company. She said, “I’m angry. I’m real angry. He put people in danger all over the city.”
A man who police identified as Johnny Medina, 40, jumped onto a carriage as the driver and a horse named Harry were headed back to the barn after a night of work. Police say that Medina hit the driver over the head with a cane. The cane broke. The 60-year-old driver jumped off and the suspect took the reins. Harry seemed to sense something was wrong and began galloping through the downtown streets toward the barn, just south of Busch Stadium.
People helped the driver and brought him to the carriage company. But, the ordeal was not over. Part of the carriage smashed into a trolley car. The suspect jumped from the carriage and began hitting the horse.
The driver got between the horse and the attacker. Other people moved in and subdued the suspect.
Holzum said, “I couldn’t even fathom it. I could not believe something like this would happen on a main city street in downtown St. Louis. I was, of course, concerned and worried. I just don’t understand the thought process behind it. I’d love to ask him a few questions, but that probably won’t happen.”
Another employee was able to free the horse from the carriage inside of the stable. The horse did not have any visible injuries, but was examined Wednesday by a veterinarian.
Medina is charged with Second Degree Robbery and Third Degree Assault. He is jailed on $30,000 cash-only bond.