“What she told me is that her training kicked in, and it was like a muscle memory,” Jennie Venzor from Fontana police said to CBS Los Angeles. “She knew she had to help her friend out.”
Looks can be very deceiving, and that’s definitely something that the 67-year-old Lorenza Marrujo has proven.
Measuring in at less than five feet tall, nobody would think that Lorenza could be a potential threat to them – but that would be a very wrong assessment.
It seems like the ‘never judge a book by its cover’ phrase is applicable time and time again.
Recently, an intruder broke into Lorenza’s third-floor apartment complex, something he almost instantly regretted.
You see, this tiny woman is very sweet and gentle but can be extremely fierce when she has to. With over 26 years of martial arts training as well as a black belt in jujitsu, Lorenza wasn’t just going to stand there and do nothing.
She’s actually got quite the moniker for herself- “Lady Ninja”, and it couldn’t be any more fitting.
The intruder tried to grab Lorenza when he stormed into the apartment, and she responded by getting a baseball bat to defend herself.
“I said, ‘Back off or I will have to hurt you,’” she recalls.
The intruder actually wasn’t a stranger to the elderly woman, or Lady Ninja, as she prefers. It was a 59-year-old man who worked as a handyman for a couple of residents at the senior living complex.
He knew the building, knew the best ways to get in and get out undetected- but didn’t realize that Lorenza is basically a tiny, volatile can of whoop-ass!
The suspect, D. Prestwood, was also intoxicated, according to Press-Enterprise.
When the assailant couldn’t overpower Lorenza, he ran away and immediately headed toward one of her close friends two floors below.
In a terrifying act, the man then attacked Lorenza’s friend and neighbor, the 87-year-old Elizabeth McCray. She uses a wheelchair to get around and couldn’t possibly defend herself against the attacks of this drunken intruder.
Luckily, Lorenza was quickly able to make a rescue.
When she arrived at Elizabeth’s apartment, she saw how the intruder stood over the woman, who fell on the floor in a struggle.
Without hesitating, Lady Ninja then attacked the assailant to protect her friend Elizabeth.
“I had to bend his fingers back … to get him off her,” she recalls.
“He was screaming because that’s one of my techniques — the bent fingers. Then I went ‘boom’ with my elbow twice in his sternum.”
All those years of jujitsu training definitely paid off!
The suspect was completely helpless as Lorenza put her knee on his chest and throat to keep him subdued until police officers arrived and were able to make the arrest.
“My knee was on his chest, my other knee was on his throat, I had his jaw, and I was aiming for his eye,” Lorenza said to CBS Los Angeles.
“Jesus was here and gave her power,” her friend Elizabeth told the Press-Enterprise. “I wouldn’t think a little lady would have the power to do this.”
The intruder begged Lorenza to stop because she was hurting him, but after just witnessing what he did to her beloved friend, she was relentless.
“He lifted up and tried to twist my hand, but at the same time, I twisted his and turned it around real fast and he was saying, ‘You’re hurting me, you’re hurting me,’” she recalls. “And I said, ‘I don’t care. I don’t care what happens to you. You had no right to hurt an elderly person.’”
Elizabeth was treated at the hospital but was able to return home the following day.
As for the suspect, he’s been jailed for elder abuse with bail set at $150,000.
Police officers are urging everyone to be careful about confronting intruders- but they definitely praised Lorenza’s bravery and willingness to help her friend in a dangerous situation.
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