A Louisiana woman is being praised for heroically jumping on a suspect’s back to help an officer struggling to take the man down and apprehend him, according to police.
Vickie Williams-Tillman, 56, was on her way to the store when she saw the Baton Rouge officer, Billy Aime, in a fight with the suspect, the Advocate reported.
Baton Rouge Police spokesman Sgt. L’Jean McKneely said the suspect used the officer’s baton to repeatedly hit him over the head while he tried to grab the officer’s gun.
Williams-Tillman jumped on the man’s back until backup arrived, police said.
Police apprehended the suspect after they shot him with a stun gun.
Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston-Broome called the woman a “courageous hero.”
“Vickie Williams-Tillman epitomizes the true Good Samaritan,” Weston-Broome said in a statement. “She reached out and offered a courageous and unconditional response to the officer. Ms. Williams-Tillman is a hero and demonstrates the true meaning of loving God and loving your neighbor.”
The incident occurred just before 8 a.m. on Sunday as Officer Aime, 44, found the 28-year-old suspect, Thomas Bennett, asleep in his car and allegedly noticed drug paraphernalia in the vehicle.
When the officer tried to make an arrest, Bennett allegedly became violent, grabbing the officer’s baton and hitting him over the head.
Bennett also took Aime’s flashlight and radio, in addition to reaching for his gun.
As Williams-Tillman passed by, she saw what was happening, pulled alongside the police officer, and asked him if he needed help.
When Aime did not respond, Williams-Tillman called 911 and notified police that an officer needed help, then jumped on Bennett’s back in an attempt to subdue him.
Additional police arrived as backup and took the suspect into custody after using a stun gun on him.
Bennett faces charges of aggravated battery, disarming a police officer, battery on a police officer, resisting arrest, and drug possession, the Daily Mail reported.
A spokesperson for the Baton Rouge Police Department said the officer suffered head injuries.