Feisty and frightened, an 88-year-old man helps thwart a carjacking in West Hartford.
Police say Leon Rhodes jumped in the back of a car at South Road and New Britain Ave. near the Westfarms mall in West Hartford about noon on Sunday -- only after he unsuccessfully tried to carjack another driver.
Rhodes allegedly threatened to kill the couple, ages 88 and 78, if they did not get on I-84. Investigators say that when they got on the highway, traffic was stopped. At that point, a police officer blocked the path of the car with his cruiser.
Rhodes tried to jump in the front seat and drive but the elderly man elbowed the suspect in the face, police said. Rhodes reached over the driver and tried to put the car in reverse but the car backed into a barrier. Police then removed Rhodes from the car and took him into custody.
Fortunately no one was injured. Police credit the first attempted carjacking victim for helping with the case by calling 911 and following the vehicle as it was carjacked.
Rhodes faces several charges including kidnapping, carjacking, larceny and interfering with an officer.