Gwinnett County, GA
A Grayson man thwarts a would-be carjacker by pulling his own gun on the suspect.
Tariq Bell and his 13-year-old daughter had just left a Snellville music store when a man tried to take his vehicle with Bell's daughter inside.
Snellville Police say the suspect, 40-year-old Ben Kline of Atlanta, and another man had just robbed a person at a nearby extended stay hotel. Despite being detained by officers, Kline broke free and led police on a foot chase.
Bell, who was a short distance away, tells WSB’s Sandra Parrish Kline then grabbed him from behind and jumped into the driver’s seat of his vehicle.
“I looked him the eyes and realized this is real, this is a bad person because he looked me in the eyes and shouted ‘give me the keys now’,” he says. That’s when Bell, who has a carry permit, pulled out his own weapon.
“I drew my gun and loaded it and told him to get out because I’m thinking you’re not about to drive off with my child in the car on a high speed chase because I knew that that’s where it was going,” he says.
And Bell was right. After running away from his car, police say Kline tried to carjack another victim who sped away. The suspect was, however, successful in carjacking a third victim waiting at a light on Hwy 124. From there he led police southbound on the busy roadway.
“He was on the other side of the road for approximately a mile and we just had to stop him because there was no question we was a danger to everybody on the road,” says Chief Roy Whitehead.
After ramming a police vehicle three times, officers were able to pin in the suspect. He then ran from officers on foot chase but was quickly apprehended.
The chief credits Bell with preventing what could have been a more dangerous situation.
“Certainly he used a legal gun for his benefit and the protection of his family,” says Whitehead.
Kline, a convicted felon, faces numerous charges including armed robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, and aggravated assault on a police officer.