Jill Pitcher says she pulled into a Collierville gas station with her two kids to get snacks before a Sunday movie, and noticed a car back in next to her, quickly and crooked.
“As I’m looking at them, I see them all look at me and it’s a car full of men. So I told my son get back in your seat, do not get out of the car.”
It was around 6:30 Sunday night at the Shell station at Byhalia and Winchester.
She was in the middle of taking her 4-year-old out of a car seat and started re-buckling it.
“It was just that I felt like I’d been punched in the gut. I just knew, I just knew we needed to leave.”
A second car then pulled behind her, blocking her in. And the first car drove around.
“So now they’re behind me and I just felt a huge jerk on my arm where my purse was and I just let it go.”
She said a passenger in one of the cars pulled a gun and told her not to look.
“I just yelled, ‘Okay.’ I turned back to my kids. I threw my oldest on the floorboard and told him to stay down and then laid on top of my youngest son.”
Her car was parked right in front of the gas station, in a well-lit spot. She waited until she heard what she believed were four men leave and ran into the gas station to get help.
“It was so quick. Nobody saw anything. They see a woman and two children running inside saying, 'Call 911' and they all just kind of panicked.”
All they really got away with was her wallet, which had no cash.
When talking to police, Pitcher found out the same cars full of men robbed two people at the Addison Apartments. They stole wallets and purses there. The victims said they saw five men and three guns.
“My first thought was, ‘Were they hurt?’”
The victims weren't hurt physically but surely emotionally — something Pitcher’s already seen from her 8-year-old.
“He’s made some comments that he was scared and he didn’t want it to be the end, which is heartbreaking for a mom to hear.”
Her biggest piece of advice is to be aware of your surroundings.
If you have any information about this, you’re asked to call Collierville Police at (901) 457-2520 or to submit an anonymous tip via text message to the Collierville Police Department, text CPDTIP and your tip to 847411 (tip411).
The suspects were in a black BMW with Tennessee tag 4J7-6W6, which was reported stolen last week, and in a Silver Mazda with Tennessee tag 2L2-4E6.