New Orleans police arrested four teen suspects who allegedly carjacked an elderly woman before dragging her to death and severing her arm on Monday.
During a Tuesday morning press conference, New Orleans Police Department Superintendent Shaun Ferguson said two of the juvenile suspects’ parents turned their children in to authorities after police released photos of the suspects.
According to WVUE, family members of Linda Frickey, 73, said she was putting something in her vehicle outside her workplace when four suspects suddenly jumped into her car and drove away.
“She got tangled in her seatbelt because they did not give her time to get out,” Frickey’s sister-in-law Kathy Richard told WDSU.
The carjackers dragged the elderly woman for more than a block before her arm was severed, causing her to fall to the ground.
Witness Todd Ecker said he and other neighbors tried to stop the suspects.
“I got out of my vehicle screaming, ‘Stop, stop. You are dragging someone!’” Ecker said. “He took off with the vehicle, still dragging her. Reckless. No care for human beings at all.”
Frickey was unresponsive when authorities responded to the incident. Her arm was dismembered, and she was pronounced dead at the scene.
“It is disgusting,” Richard said. “You have a 73-year-old woman just at her job. Putting things in the car. They dragged her. No forethought. Dismembered her. Why? She was just a good person.”
Frickey is survived by her husband, children, grandchildren and siblings.
“She would have helped anyone off the streets,” Richard added. “She would have given them the car if they would have just given her the chance to step away.”
Superintendent Ferguson called the incident “horrific,” noting that the suspects include a 17-year-old male, a 16-year-old female, and two 15-year-old females. Each suspect is being charged with second-degree murder.
“The parents of one 15-year-old female immediately called our investigators and turned their daughter in,” Ferguson said. “Then, the parent of the 17-year-old turned her son in.”
“This was an incredibly difficult decision on behalf of these parents,” he added. “I want to commend them for doing the right thing, and absolutely we need more parenting like that. There are a lot of emotions. I won’t even begin to want to wonder what those emotions are like.”
Jenny Griffin, Frickey’s sister, said she was “the best person.”
“She was just the kindest. The best person,” Griffin said. “It is a hole in all of our lives that we will never get back. She will be deeply missed. That is all I can say.”
“When is it going to stop? That is what they target? Old ladies. It is cowardly. It’s evil,” she added. “The parents need to be held accountable.”