'He never stopped': Woman struck by her own car at Detroit gas station

A woman was run over by her own car after it was stolen by a man while she was at a Detroit gas station with her 12-year-old daughter.

"He definitely could’ve killed me. He never stopped. He never broke," said Mary Pridgen. "Even when he did hit me. He kept going. He never stopped."

Pridgen and her daughter were buying snacks for the Lions game last Sunday, at a Mobil gas station on McNichols and I-75, when the incident took place.

As they walked out, Pridgen saw a car that looked just like hers taking off, she said. When she realized it was her car, she ran over to try and stop the man stealing it. He ran her over, broke her leg, and got away.

Mary Pridgen's car was stolen from a Detroit gas station and used to run her over on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2024. She sustained a broken foot. (GoFundMe)

"It’s like a bad dream every time I think about it," Pridgen said. "I just went from having a nice time, rooting (for) the Lions, screaming, and hooting, and hollering… now I'm car-less and legless."

Pridgen had to undergo a five-hour emergency foot surgery on Monday. She is still recovering in the hospital.

Doctors told her she will not be able to put weight on her leg for at least three months, she said from her hospital bed. As a mother of five, that poses a huge problem. 

Pridgen, who works in home care, will not be able to work during her recovery. And her car, a 2014 dark green Ford Explorer, remains missing. 

"I’ve never been without work or anything," she said. "I’ve always provided for my family. It’s definitely going to be a total change for me and my kids, for me just to be down like this."

With no car, no income, and a broken leg – Pridgen's friend created a GoFundMe campaign to help her buy a new vehicle and cover monthly expenses. 

As for the suspect, "he could’ve asked me for a ride and I would’ve gave it to him, if he needed to go somewhere," Pridgen said. "I’m really that type of person. I would’ve helped you… This really messed me up for the next six months and definitely traumatized my daughter and my family."

Those able to donate to Pridgen's GoFundMe can do so by tapping here.

Detroit police’s commercial auto theft unit is investigating. Anyone with information is asked to call 313-596-2955 or 1-800-SPEAK-UP.


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