Police say “bump and rob” was isolated incident

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Security officers in Central Gardens say a driver being attacked was an isolated incident. A man bumped by another car near Peabody and Central was pepper sprayed and shot at when he got out to talk to the driver.

The incident is making people think twice about what to do if they are bumped by a car on the road.

“Thinking back on it, it was kind of dumb getting out of my car at 11 at night when you get bumped with four teens in the car,” said Thad Caperton.

Capterton says he was stopped at this stop sign on S. Willett when he was bumped and when he got out to exchange information with the driver, four teens got out and started pepper spraying him. One of them even fired a gun.

“I drove away as quickly as possible until my eyes closed-up and I had to stop but they had stopped following me so I called the cops at that point.”

Phelps Security provides guards who patrol the Central Gardens neighborhood 24 hours a day. It says it’s never heard of this kind of thing happening in this area before. Neighbors who heard about the recent crime say they've also heard of this ‘bump and rob’ scheme.

“I have read about it in the AARP magazine. It is not something that is unique to Memphis,” said Denise Bollheimer.

“They were telling me to be careful and to be cautious,” said Sherry Mathews, who says a ‘bump and rob’ scheme happened to one of her friends.

“I would say if someone bumps your car at night, it’s probably best to stay in your car and call the cops instead of getting out to deal with it yourself,” said Caperton.

“I would immediately go to a McDonald’s or some public place,” said Bollheimer.

“I am just going to go to the police station because I am going to be scared to stop,” said Mathews.

Law enforcement recommends that if you do get bumped on the road, signal the driver to follow you to a public place and jot down their license plate if you can on the way there.

“It happened so fast that I didn`t really have time to think,” said Caperton.

Caperton says with so much pepper spray in his eyes, he never had a chance to get a good description of the car or the criminals inside.

If you know anything, call Crimestoppers at 528-CASH.


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