Woman carjacked by teens outside church still resolves to make Memphis better

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Police are investigating a carjacking involving two young men that stemmed from a ride outside a Cooper-Young church.

The victim works as a community advocate for kids in Memphis and did not want to share her identity.

“I was waiting on a friend, who I was going to meet at a bar," she said of the way the incident began Tuesday night.

She said she was waiting in her car when two young men approached her.

“These kids didn’t look older than 17. They looked really young and I do a lot of work with kids that age," she said. “There are a lot of people in unreliable situations. They don’t have rides. I know how hard it is to get around without a car.”

But what happened next has her scared, confused and conflicted.

"They were saying they were trying to get their aunt to pick them up to get back home to Frayser," she said. "They asked to get a ride up the street to the store."

She said she started giving them a ride when they started leading her down a dark street.

They stopped near the intersection of Carnes Avenue and Philadelphia Street.

"They pulled out a gun right after that and told me to get out of the car," she said.

They got away with her car and cell phone. She was still holding her bag with her wallet and computer.

After that, she said she ran about half a mile to a convenience store on Lamar Avenue.

Once there she called the police.

On the one hand, she’s terrified. But that's also why she's conflicted.

"I feel bad for them because I don’t know what it is in their world that makes it feel like this is something to do," she said. "That was the surreal part. They just seemed like kids and they had the gun pointed at me."

The victim said she learned a lesson; she can’t always help as much as she wants. But she’s still determined to make Memphis a better place.

Police recovered the victim's car Thursday morning. She said she also recovered her phone on the side of the road near the crime scene.