News: Heroes walk among us
Story by Sgt. Alexandra Shea
HINESVILLE, Ga – It has turned out to be an extraordinary week for the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division. A routine trip to the grocery store for Sgt. Jose Lopez of Headquarters, Headquarters Company, 3rd Brigade Support Battalion, took a wild turn, July 16.
“I went to Kroger, it was kind of late. I went to get some drinks and get ready to go fishing with my kids this weekend and as I was walking out of the bathroom I heard things falling off the shelves,” said Lopez. “I saw a female store employee shouting, ‘Get out of the way.’ I looked around the corner and saw a car and it was pulling away.”
The car was a green 1992 Honda Accord that had smashed through the automatic doors at the front of the store. The car traveled down a row of isles and came to rest near the back of the store before backing all the way out again.
What happened next, Lopez attributed to reflexes he learned during his past three deployments overseas.
“I just ran towards the car and I started shouting, ‘Stop! Get out of the car! Put your hands where I can see them!’ said Lopez. ”Then two other people came over and held him down.”
The car’s driver complied without violence to Lopez’s commands. The two other men helped to restrain the driver of the car, later identified as 27 year-old Jenorris Eugene McKenzie of Hinesville, Ga. Responders from the City of Hinesville Police Department arrived shortly to the scene and took McKenzie into custody.
“The damage was substantial. The entire front door of Kroger was destroyed. Fortunately no one was injured as a result of it,” said Senior Patrol Officer James Fulwood. “We appreciate the fact that they stepped in, saw a need in the community to help, and without being told just took action.”