Kathy Rhodes, a seasoned cab driver, took action and helped take down an accused assailant while working in Hagerstown, Maryland.
Kathy Rhodes, a seasoned cab driver from Hagerstown, Maryland, picked up 34-year-old Juan Rivera on October 5, 2011, at 5:30 a.m.
"He wanted me to drive him to a house on Reiff Church Road in Hagerstown, wait for him, then drive him back home," says Kathy.
But that's not what happened. Instead, Rivera took Kathy on the ride of her life. Kathy says when she pulled up to the house, Rivera got out of the cab, went up to the door, knocked, then kicked it in.
"My headlights were shinning on the door so I could see everything," says Kathy. "He was beating a woman and when I heard her say something like don't shoot me, I called 9-1-1."
Mike Shifler, the 9-1-1 dispatcher that answered Kathy's call, says Kathy was frantic at first, but he was able to calm her down. He tried to get Kathy to pull away from the house so that she would be safe, but before she could, Rivera got back in the cab.
Mike was worried because he wasn't sure if the man was armed, or if he would try to take Kathy hostage. "We had to get her somewhere safe, a public place where we could control the situation."
Mike and Kathy hatched a plan. She was going to meet police at a local McDonalds. Kathy didn't want to tip Rivera off, so she pretended to be on the phone with her cab dispatcher.
"Kathy coming up with the idea to meet at McDonalds was a great idea," says Mike.
"I told him [Rivera] that I had to stop at McDonalds to get my boss something." It all worked, because when Kathy pulled into the McDonalds, police were there, and when the area was secure, they grabbed Rivera out of her cab. But it wasn't over just yet.
"He fought with the police officer. He got him down on the ground," says Kathy. But another officer arrived on the scene, and with his help, Rivera was taken into custody.
Rivera was charged with third degree burglary, fourth degree burglary, three counts of assault, one count of resisting arrest and one count of failure to obey a lawful command of a police officer.
As for the people in the house, they were fine. Thanks to Kathy's willingness and courage to get involved along with Mike's 9-1-1 training, no one was seriously hurt.