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Elderly Korean War Vet Fights Off Carjacker

LINCOLN PARK, Mich. (WJBK) -- "Even today when I [thought] about it, I thought, 'Oh my God, I could have been dead or he could have been dead,'" said Constance Trusewicz.

The 78-year-old has been married to her 81-year-old husband, Barney, for 56 years. They both have bad knees, but they are still active and the best of friends.

Saturday they stopped at a gas station at Fort and Goddard in Lincoln Park. Police say 39-year-old Christopher Bowens had somewhere to go and he decided to carjack Constance and Barney.

It turns out Bowens just got out of prison in December and has as many priors as he does tattoos -- numerous bank robberies, larcenies and stolen cars.

"He indicated that he targeted the elderly couple because of their age," Lincoln Park Police Sergeant Joseph Lavis said in court. "He felt that they would offer little or no resistance."

Surveillance video from the gas station shows Barney shuffle over to tell the attendant to turn on the pump, then a man walks up to their car, gets inside and attempts to take off.

"He [said], 'Get out of the car. I'm taking it.' And I [said], 'What?' And then I looked and I saw all these tattoos and I thought, 'Oh crap,'" Constance Trusewicz explained.

Remember Constance has bad knees. She can't move very fast. Barney, a Korean War veteran, realized what was happening and rushed over to the car. He reached inside and turned off the engine, but it turns out the man had a butcher knife and he was ready for a fight.

"With the left hand I shut the car off twice, and then I spotted the knife and I held onto it," Barney Trusewicz said.

"I was just waiting for him to thrust it into his stomach, but didn't happen," Constance Trusewicz remarked.

Barney grabbed the man by the wrist and wrestled him until he just gave up and ran away.

"He [said], 'I'm going, I'm getting out of here.' I said, Okay.' I just didn't want him to come and give me a parting shot," Barney Trusewicz said.

"He did what he had to do," said Lincoln Park Police Chief Thomas Karnes. "Probably Bowens in this case is lucky he got away without being seriously hurt from him, I would think."

"It was mine, and what is mine is mine. What is yours is yours, and
let's keep it that way," Barney Trusewicz stated.

Constance Trusewicz said she feels bad for Bowens' parents. His dad is the public safety commission chairman in Lincoln Park. His brother was Matt Bowens, the Detroit police officer who was killed in the line of duty.

Bowens was remanded to the Wayne County Jail. He was on parole, as well as probation both for federal and state charges. He's now facing a possible life sentence.

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Added: Mar-28-2012 Occurred On: Mar-28-2012
By: marinemom
In:
Regional News
Tags: carjack, veteran, Korean War vet, crime, Barney Trusewicz
Location: Lincoln Park, Michigan, United States (load item map)
Views: 2827 | Comments: 24 | Votes: 6 | Favorites: 1 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 2
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