MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Davin Thomas’ ground-length locks took almost three decades to grow. Pick combs aren’t exactly his best friend, but he was still surprised Tuesday morning when one almost became a weapon against him.
“He picks up my son’s pick comb for his hair and he holds it up like this at the window,” said Thomas, referring to an intruder who had gotten into his son’s SUV.
The confrontation happened when his son, Yusef Thomas, was getting ready for school at his home in the Sea Isle section of East Memphis. He only made it as far as the driveway before he noticed 41-year-old Jose Orellana in the passenger’s seat of his SUV.
“I was on my phone, I looked up and all of a sudden I see a strange man just sitting there staring at me with some big eyes,” he said.
Yusef called for his father, who came running out to confront the intruder, who refused leave and had locked himself inside the SUV.
It’s at that point Orellana reached for the pick comb and Thomas returned with a stick.
“I motion at him like I was gonna stab him,” Thomas said.
The intruder finally left, but Thomas later had second thoughts about the way he had handled things, thinking the intruder might have been homeless.
“I started thinking to myself, ‘Aw, I missed a moment — I missed an opportunity to show my son how to show compassion,” he said.
But then Orellana reappeared, peering through Thomas’ windows.
When police arrived, they say Orellana began jumping fences before turning on them.
He allegedly bit and choked one officer while reaching for the officer’s gun. Police say he also kicked three other officers.
Police used pepper spray and deployed a stun gun three times before they were finally able to get him under control.
“It definitely makes me grateful that he didn’t try to become violent with us,” said Yusef Thomas.
The younger Thomas admits his SUV was unlocked, but said he plans to lock it from now on.
Orellana is charged with four counts of aggravated assault, four counts of resisting official detention, as well as single counts of criminal trespass and evading arrest.