MINNEAPOLIS — Susie was as prepared as anyone can be when she was surrounded by four teens, beaten, robbed and carjacked.
"I had pepper spray in my purse. I never could have gotten to it. I've taken a self-defense class this spring. It didn't do me any good," she said. "I only wanted to get away. So I did whatever I could to get away."
It happened 3 p.m. Friday at 50th Street and Chowen Avenue in Minneapolis, close to the Edina border. Susie parked, scheduled a work appointment on her cell phone, then stepped out of her car.
"Out of what seemed like nowhere, four young men came at me quickly, pushed me to the ground, kicked me, hit me," she said.
They took her purse, cell phone, and her car – a black Audi Q5 – which Minneapolis police say continues to be used to commit more crimes around the city.
Robberies are up 36% from last year. On September 22, the Minneapolis Police Department started specifically tracking carjackings. Since then, there have been 61. The suspects very often teens. Susie estimates the boys who attacked her were 15 or 16 years old.
"I have teenagers, and the thought of them doing to someone else what these teenagers did to me, is horrific," she said.
Physical injuries are healing, but Susie can't sleep with the mental wounds having a much bigger impact.
For the first time, Susie says she doesn't feel safe in the city she loves.
"We need the Minneapolis City Council and Mayor (Jacob Frey) to lead us. We are a city in crisis, she said. "They are not leading us. We need a fully staffed police force. A police force that can actively patrol streets to try to prevent crime from happening."