Journee Nelson was honored by West Palm Beach Police for her bravery in fighting off a robber to protect her mother.
West Palm Beach Police Department
  • A 9-year-old girl fought off a robber who attacked her mother and pursued him for five blocks.
  • Journee Nelson has been hailed as a hero by police and given a certificate of bravery.
  • Her mother said she was proud of her daughter, but said the girl had suffered mentally after the incident.
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Police have hailed a brave nine-year-old girl, a hero, after fighting off a purse thief attacking her mother.

Journey Nelson and her mother were shopping for groceries in West Palm Beach, Florida, on November 2 when a thief tried to rob them, 7 News Miami reported.

Newly released surveillance footage shows Nelson and her mother Danielle Mobley walking up to their car in the parking lot outside Sabor Tropical Supermarket.

As Mobley begins to put the groceries away, the thief, who police identified as 29-year-old Demetrius Jackson, lunges and tackles her to the ground while trying to steal her purse.

Journey Nelson can be seen running over from the other side of the car and repeatedly hitting Jackson until he runs away.

The nine-year-old then pursued the robber for five blocks, 7 News Miami reported.

"I fought back. I had to save my mom," Nelson said in a press conference aired by the outlet.

"We struggled over the purse. He pushed me down to the ground," Danielle Mobley said in the press conference.

"That is when I let it go and figured he would take off. I wasn't expecting her to take off after him," she said.

Jackson was caught two days after the attack, and he has been charged with robbery and battery, the outlet reported.

On Thursday, Florida police gave Journee a "certificate of bravery" for defending her mother during the robbery.

"I wouldn't recommend that you confront an individual like that, but in the heat of the moment, things happen," Chief Frank Adderley said in the press conference, per 7 News Miami.

"I bet he was shocked when she kicked him right in the face because he definitely could tell on the video that he was not expecting that. And her actions were perfect timing in this particular situation, and I think she hit him pretty hard."

In the news conference, Mobley said that while she was proud of her daughter, Nelson had suffered mentally after the incident.

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