7-Year-Old Girl Saves Sister After Grandfather Was Carjacked on the Way Home From Day Care

 7-Year-Old Girl Saves Sister After Grandfather Was Carjacked on the Way Home From Day Care

WSMV 4 Nashville / YouTube screenshot

A heroic act by a 7-year-old girl saved her and her 3-year-old sister when their grandfather’s truck was forcibly taken by a carjacker in Nashville, right after being picked up from their daycare on Wednesday afternoon.

The Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) recounted that Elijah Malik McDowell, a 27-year-old felon on probation from Rutherford County, initially evaded police after carjacking a black Dodge Charger, threatening the 35-year-old owner at gunpoint near the Super 8 Motel on Murfreesboro Pike.

Following a pursuit, McDowell crashed the Charger on I-440 after police deployed a spike strip that disabled the car, leading him to abandon the vehicle and firearm, as reported by MNPD.

WSMV, a local news outlet, detailed that McDowell then attempted another carjacking in a residential area, targeting Luis Mena’s truck shortly after he had collected his granddaughters, Stephanie and Amy, from daycare.

Mena recounted his struggle with McDowell, who was masked with a ski mask and tried to pull Mena from his truck. The altercation resulted in Mena being thrown to the ground and losing consciousness. When he awoke, spurred by the cries of his grandchildren, he feared for their safety, knowing they were in the truck as it was stolen.

Miraculously, it was revealed that the cry Mena heard was from Stephanie who, along with her sister, had been saved by Amy’s quick thinking. Amy had managed to get both herself and her sister out of the truck before McDowell drove away.

Reflecting on the incident, Mena emphasized that while material things can be replaced, his granddaughters’ lives are irreplaceable.

MNPD reported that their detectives, who were already in pursuit of McDowell, located the stolen Toyota Tundra on Sadler Avenue. McDowell had abandoned the truck and fled on foot into the woods, but he was eventually detained by a police canine team on the railroad tracks.

McDowell sustained dog bites during his arrest and received medical treatment before being charged on Thursday morning with a series of offenses, including carjacking, felony evading arrest, illegal firearm possession by a felon, using a firearm in a violent felony, possessing a device that converts a firearm to fully automatic, aggravated assault for endangering the children, reckless driving, resisting arrest, and operating a vehicle with a revoked license.

A judicial commissioner set McDowell’s bond at $211,000. Previous convictions for aggravated assault and narcotics charges were noted in WSMV’s report.

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