Exclusive: 81-Year-Old Car Theft Victim Recalls Frightening Crime
By Elizabeth Hur
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — An 81-year-old woman became the victim of a frightening crime and spoke only to Eyewitness News.
She stopped to pick up a newspaper then moments later, her car was gone and she was picking herself up off a busy street.
“Don’t take any chances. Don’t trust anybody. Don’t be like me,” Dorothy Taylor said.
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, a car is stolen every 33 seconds in the United States. But it’s not everyday a car theft is caught on tape. In Taylor’s case, it was. Police released the surveillance video to Eyewitness News and Taylor is now asking the public to learn from her mistakes.
Taylor explained, “I know I turned it off and something I don’t usually do, I left the keys.”
Taylor considers herself street-smart and says she is usually aware of her surroundings. At 81-year-old, Taylor keeps busy volunteering and working out 3 days a week. In fact, she was on her way to the gym when she was victimized. She admits she left the keys in the ignition when she stepped out of her car to grab a newspaper. The suspected thief is seen on the surveillance video walking around the back of her car and Taylor runs back to confront him.
“He meets me at the door and I say ‘My car!’ And he slides in and then boom. The look he gave me was like it was his car, like I’m the one who’s crazy but he was cool as a cucumber,” Taylor recalled.
Taylor’s car is still missing. It’s a Dark Grey 2007 Toyota Camry with a Pennsylvania Tag: PD5293V.
It happened Monday morning at the corner of Mt Airy and Stenton Avenues in Philadelphia’s Mt Airy neighborhood. Taylor suffered cuts and scrapes when she was thrown to the ground, trying to grab the thief who sped away.
“What would I say to him? I could have been his mother. He could have seriously harmed me. Just think about what you did and the damage you caused, it’s not worth it,” Taylor said.
Taylor is hoping with help from the public, her car is returned. Police say they are grateful Taylor was not hurt more seriously and they are investigating.