Ohio Man Honored for Taking Down Purse Thief

by Samantha Whidden

An Ohio man who stopped a suspected thief from getting away with an elderly woman’s purse was presented with a Citizen’s Award in Butler County.  

ABC 15 reports that the Ohio man, whose name is Deshawn Pressley, was shopping at the Lemon Township Kroger. He had even spoken to the victim, 87-year-old Patricia Goins, right before the incident happened. 

According to Pressley, he was one aisle over when he heard Goins screaming for help. He immediately ran after the suspect, who had taken Goins purse. Surveillance video shows him actually tackling the suspect. He then proceeded to pitch and hold him until law enforcement arrived. 

Following the incident, Ohio Sheriff Richard Jones stated that it was probably the first time the alleged thief, 58-year-old Derek Vaughn, was happy to see police officers. Vaughn was notably charged with felony robbery and theft. He is currently in jail with a $55,000 bond.

The Ohio man stated he was honored for making a citizen’s arrest. “I just turned around and did what I had to do as a citizen. I’m glad I helped her. Because she’s a wonderful, lovely lady. And I just love helping people. Especially older women.”

Pressley went on to add that he has a soft spot for elderly women because his grandmother took him in when his mother passed away. She had rules and he said she raised him right. 

Ohio Elderly Woman Praises Young Man For Stopping Robbery

During her interview with WLWT, Ohio elderly woman Pat Goins spoke about how Deshawn Pressley helped her during a pretty scary situation. “You are truly a great person. I owe you more than I could ever thank you for. And I want you to have a great life, a great year, and love that baby girl.”

She also spoke about the grocery store incident. “You have a million thoughts. You think this can’t be happening. Not to me,” she explained. The woman also recalled exactly what happened. “And, then I screamed, ‘He stole my purse.’”

The Ohio woman revealed she had just turned her head for a second when Vaughn grabbed her purse. She said that was when Pressley stepped in. “Hearing her voice screaming and her being scared,” Pressley stated. “I just knew I had to do something.”

Goins also explained that Pressley had managed to pull Vaughn out of his truck and had him on the ground with his knee on him. She said she couldn’t believe what had just happened. She told the media outlet what she said to the alleged thief. “I think I was a little bit hurt to think that somebody would do that. And, I told him, I pointed at him and said, ‘you know, if you needed something, all you had to do was ask.’”