Crime stopped by saucy instincts

Monday, March 10th 2008, 7:24 pm
By: News 9

By Alex Cameron, NEWS 9

We occasionally hear about a brave homeowner or store clerk who foils a crime by grabbing a weapon and taking action. Usually the weapon is a gun, but that wasn't the case of one 'saucy' Oklahoma City resident.

Timberly Eckelmann's husband, Bryan, is a local pastor and avid golfer. Last Thursday, he left the garage door open, which Timberly noticed as she came home from the grocery store.

"So I pulled around to the side of the garage, parked my car, and I was getting the groceries out of the trunk," Timberly said. "I looked up and a man with my husband's golf clubs over his shoulder was running out of the garage. I got very mad."

Timberly yelled at the man to stop, when he didn't, she said instinct took over.

"Without thinking I just reached into the bag, the first thing I grabbed was this tomato sauce, I pulled it up like this and I let go," Timberly said.

The jar of Paul Newman Soccarooni Pasta Sauce flew through the air and hit the target dead on.

There's a spot on the driveway where the marinara-drenched suspect then dropped the tomato-tainted golf clubs, but Timberly's saucy ordeal wasn't over.

"He continued to run without the golf bag, this way, and I got behind the car like this, picked up my keys, pushed the panic button, and the car alarm went off," Timberly said.

Fortunately, right at that moment, a police officer happened to be driving by, heard the car alarm, saw the commotion and drove right over. He pulled up right next to the trash can and was able to easily apprehend the would-be thief, marinara stains and all.

Oklahoma City Police Sgt Gary Knight said police recommend citizens, when in situations like this, just call 911.

"Because although it works out in some situations OK, like in this case, in other situations you might find yourself in a position where you could get hurt or even worse," Knight said.

The Eckelmanns realize they were fortunate.

"I was just anxious that she tried something like that," Bryan said.

"Never underestimate a pastor's wife," Timberly said.