Ohio police are hailing an 8-year-old boy as a "hero" for saving his 10-year-old sister from an alleged attempted kidnapping. Police say the boy pulled his sister from the suspect's grasp and they were able to tumble out of a moving car to safety.
The Middletown Division of Police posted the story on its Facebook page Friday.
The post said the childrens' 69-year-old grandmother, Nita Coburn, had driven another woman to the hospital Thursday afternoon with her two grandchildren in the back seat. As Coburn helped the woman into the emergency room, 24-year-old Dalvir Singh hopped into the driver's seat and took off with the car — with the kids still in the back, according to police.
The boy thought quickly and was able to open the door to escape. The girl began to jump out of the car as well but the suspect grabbed her hoodie to keep her from getting out of, police wrote.
Then, said police, "As she tried to get away, her little brother grabbed hold of her and pulled her away from the kidnapper and they both tumbled out of the vehicle as it was moving."
Coburn didn't realize her grandchildren had escaped since they'd rolled out of the passenger side while she chased the car on the driver's side, police added. She can be seen in surveillance video holding onto the car as it sped up. The post said the car dragged her as it "accelerated at a high rate of speed" and she was "forced to let go."
Officers spotted the stolen car fleeing the scene and stopped Singh. The post described Singh, 24, as a native of India and addicted to heroin. He was taken into custody and charged with two counts of kidnapping, felonious assault for dragging Coburn and grand theft.
Middletown Police Chief Rodney Muterspaw lauded the boy in a statement, saying, "This little guy is a hero. No question," said Chief Muterspaw, according to the Facebook post. "He pulled his sister out of the car with no concern for his own safety. That is incredible at his age." The chief also praised the officers who caught the suspect.
Middletown police said they plan to formally honor the boy.