A Philadelphia man was beaten to death by a crowd of onlookers after he allegedly tried to carjack a vehicle with children still inside, ABC News reports.
Authorities say that on Thursday night at about 9:50 p.m., the incident went down. According to WFXG-TV, a woman drove with her three kids to a pizza place, where the children’s dad worked. She parked the car, engine running, with the kids still inside, to go into the pizza place and visit with the kids’ dad. That’s when a man, identified as Eric Hood, allegedly jumped into the car and attempted to drive off.
He didn’t get far. The parents were able to stop the car at a red light and pull Hood out. Hood attempted to flee on foot, but he was soon surrounded by an angry mob that kicked and punched him repeatedly until the police arrived and put a stop to it.
Hood was taken to a nearby medical center, but it was too late — his injuries proved fatal, and he was pronounced dead. The children, meanwhile, were not injured.
As of this writing, police have interviewed the parents, but have not charged them with any crimes. Criminal charges may yet be forthcoming, however.
#CARJACKING SUSPECT KILLED: #Philadelphia police say a carjacking suspect has died after he allegedly stole a car with three children inside and was chased down and beaten by their parents- Lesson: don’t steal car... https://t.co/wZRpQVY19V— Mental Ammo (@MentalAmmo) July 12, 2019
This kind of “mob justice” is rare in the United States, but not unheard-of. For example, in 2018, as LawandCrime.com reported at the time, New York man Jauan Blume attempted to rob a man, only to receive a brutal beating at the hands of an angry mob for his efforts. Specifically, Blume attempted to rob a man of his jewelry — the would-be victim fought him off, and soon, a crowd had shown up. He survived, but suffered a gunshot wound and other severe injuries in the process.
Back in Philadelphia, the neighborhood where Hood was beaten to death by an angry mob is reeling from the event. Most neighbors and business owners in the area seem to be of the opinion that, though the carjacking was a serious crime and was likely terrifying for the kids and the family, mob justice is not the way to fight crime.
Jacqueline Maddalo, for example, tells The Philadelphia Inquirer that this isn’t the solution to the city’s crime problem.
“There’s a lot of street justice in this area,” she said. “Crime’s not going to come down if people keep taking care of crime instead of letting the courts handle it. We’re becoming uncivilized,” she said.