Christopher Masters, 33. (Source: Shreveport Police Department)
Heather Cagle thanks Colton Williamson, a complete stranger, who chased after a man who is accused of stealing her purse in a Shreveport Walmart parking lot Friday night.
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -
A local woman has her purse back, thanks to the heroics of a quick-acting Good Samaritan.
"It may not seem like a big deal to some people, but it was very scary," said Heather Cagle, who nearly lost her purse to the alleged thief.
Cagle along with her 8-year-old son were loading the car full of groceries at the Walmart on Mansfield Rd. just before 8 p.m. Friday, when her evening took an unexpected turn. "I put the eggs and the bread in the front seat and leaned back over to get my purse and saw a man grab the purse out of the buggy and run away," Cagle explained, adding that the man seemed to come out of nowhere.
"Of course I freak out and say ,'I don't think so' and I chased after him," Cagle said, even though she admits it did cross her mind that she might not be able to tackle the accused purse snatcher.
At that time, Colton Williamson, a complete stranger, happened to be walking to his truck in the same parking lot, "Before I made it to my truck, I heard a scream," he said. That's when he looked to his left and saw Cagle racing full speed across the parking lot after a man holding a pink coach purse.
"I don't know, I didn't really think about it much, I just took off after them," Williamson said, explaining that it was his instincts that kicked in when he also started running after the guy with the purse, "because I knew they weren't just playing tag in the parking lot," he said.
Cagle was surprised to see someone else join in on the chase. "I didn't know who he [Williamson] was. I had never seen him before."
It wasn't until Williamson was halfway across the parking lot, when his thought process kicked back in. "I was like, what am I going to do with this guy once I catch up to him? And I was catching him pretty quick," he said and explained he chased the alleged thief into the wooded area near the store.
"I grabbed him by the back of his jacket and he ended up falling into a bush," said Williamson. "He said 'Just take it!' He gave me the purse."
"I wasn't worried about him, I was worried about getting away from him," Williamson added.
"It wasn't scary until I saw him wrestling with the guy," Cagle said, choking back tears.
"I thought he could have a gun or a knife, I didn't want someone to get hurt over a purse."
Williamson only suffered a few scratches on his arm and neck in the struggle. But the accused thief, 33-year old Christopher Masters, had more than a few scratches, after he reportedly fought with officers before they arrested him.
"I work really hard for what I have, for someone to just come and take my purse, it's just an extreme violation, it's not a good feeling," Cagle said. Still, she is looking past her sour feelings, focusing instead Sunday afternoon on thanking her Good Samaritan. "Colton thank you for coming to my rescue, you are truly a hero, you're my hero," she told Williamson.
After this experience, Cagle vows to be more alert in the future.
Masters, of Urbandale in Shreveport, was booked into the Shreveport City jail on one count of purse snatching and one count of resisting an officer.