East Texas Woman Carjacked At Knife Point - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

12/5/06-Tyler

East Texas Woman Carjacked At Knife Point

John Clay Stricker, Jr., 52 into custody. John Clay Stricker, Jr., 52 into custody.
Brookshires Gas Station in Tyler's Bergfeld Center Brookshires Gas Station in Tyler's Bergfeld Center

A change of plans Tuesday night for an East Texas woman. Dressed and on her way to a party, she found herself at the mercy of a suspected carjacker.   The carjacking happened around 4:00 p.m. at the Brookshires Gas Station in Tyler's Bergfeld Center. Police later caught up with the car at Highway 14 and I-20.  

Mary Smyth, 75 of Tyler was filling up her car, when a man out of nowhere approached her.

"A man ran up and said give me the keys, give me the keys and I said I don't have the keys and he poked a knife at my mid section," said Smyth. She told the man the keys were in her SUV and he immediately jumped in.

"I realized he was going to carjack me and, so I grabbed, he slammed the door and I grabbed the gasoline nozzle out of the filling, and I just opened the door and drowned him with the gasoline," said Smyth. The gas didn't stop the carjacker. Smyth says he sped off and headed north through Tyler. The trip however, was short-lived. Using the SUV's on star system, police were able to find the car and the driver within 30 minutes.

"We did have some investigators get behind the vehicle," said Officer Don Martin, Tyler Police Department. "We did follow the vehicle at a safe distance until we were able to get it pulled over." Police took the carjacker identified as John Clay Stricker, Jr., 52 into custody, then gave Smyth back her car keys.

"The chief of police lived in my neighborhood, and I can't wait to call him and tell him how helpful all the gentleman were." said Smyth. 

Stricker, Jr. of Lake Kiowa, Texas has been charged with aggravated robbery and carjacking. Police say he also had warrants out for his arrest for theft and parole violation.

Molly Reuter, reporting. mreuter@kltv.com

 

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