Would-be carjacker Paul Salsman walked up to Weiler’s Toyota minivan, and although the doors were locked, he reached in through an open window to let himself in. Twelve-year-old Maddie and 7-year-old Mollie were understandably shaken.
“He was saying all these things like, ‘Let’s go’ and ‘I need to get to this place,” Maddie told local news station WTKR. Salsman tried to start the van and take off, but Maddie acted quickly by holding the vehicle’s shift lever in the drive position, which prevented the carjacking. Then, like any protective sister would, she issued a well-deserved smackdown.
“I just went for it,” Maddie said. “Nothing passed my mind except, ‘He is a psycho and he needs to get out of the car.’”
With the shifter still in drive, Maddie punched Salsman repeatedly while screaming for help. It was a side of her sister Mollie hadn’t seen before, but given they come from a family of police officers and firefighters, Maddie’s reaction wasn’t all that surprising. Except to Salsman, of course.
“I thought he was going to take us,” Mollie said. “It was amazing because she has never done that.”
Salsman was eventually charged with three counts of felony carjacking, along with felony hit-and-run and driving under the influence. Apparently, he had to be tased twice before being taken into custody. Maddie actually beat him down so hard she suffered a fractured growth plate in her wrist, but if she was in the same situation again, she probably wouldn’t do anything different. Her advice to other girls in the same position?“Just fight them.”
Well done, Maddie. Well done.