PCA Investigates a Car Jacking Crime on CampusTuesday, May 08, 2012 By Newspaper Staff
Nina Cherry, the mother of two sophomore students Ryan and Amanda, was attacked Monday afternoon, May 7, at 5 PM near the PCA athletic field house. A man stole her van, ran her over, and dragged her several feet. Mrs. Cherry was seriously injured according to Headmaster Jay Pritcher. She underwent surgery for a fractured pelvis and internal injuries at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth. Pantego Christian Academy administrators say Mrs. Cherry’s injuries are serious but they are hopeful for her recovery. Groups from the school met to pray Monday night at both the hospital and Braums across the street from the school. The suspect was quickly taken into custody after officers from the East Arlington District spotted the van near Arkansas Lane and Browning Drive and gave chase, Arlington police said on their Twitter feed. Police caught up with the suspect a short time later in the 3100 block of Sunnybrook Lane in Arlington. According to Channel 8 WFAA, Benjamin Rowell, 32, was arrested after attempting to flee police on foot. Rowell is being held at the Arlington jail on a $520,000 bond. A press release was issued from Headmaster Pritcher soon after the tragic incident: “Arlington and Pantego Police continue their investigation of a carjacking on our campus late this afternoon, resulting in the serious injury of a PCA parent. Media may contact Officer Barry Reeves of the Pantego Police Department at 817-296-3245 for all updates on the investigation…We invite all to join the PCA community in prayer for Mrs. Cherry and her family…Our campus has a comprehensive security system in place, which includes more than two dozen surveillance cameras. Our staff and families have been notified of this attack on our campus, and we feel the integrity of our campus safety remains intact. We will have additional counseling staff on hand Tuesday and as needed this week to comfort students and staffers as they deal with the news.” In an email to parents and staff, PCA encouraged parents to share the news with their children: “We urge you to share this news with your children as appropriate…Our principals and teachers are aware of the situation and will be available to children as well. Please talk with your children if you feel it might come up; it is important their first word come from you since you set the tone for information and reaction…We urge your family to pray for the comfort and healing of Mrs. Cherry, and the peace and comfort of her family. A Caring Bridge site is being established for Mrs. Cherry where her progress and opportunities to help the family will be posted.” PCA posted a link on Facebook to the Caring Bridge site for Mrs. Cherry: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/ninacherry . In addition a calendar for meals for the Cherry family has been created. The need at this time is for meals to go to the hospital to feed the family members. This calendar will be updated to reflect any additional needs by the family such as errands, yard work, transportation, etc. as the needs arise. To access the Cherry family Care Calendar please visit: http://www.carecalendar.org/logon/112153 ; CALENDAR ID: 112153; SECURITY CODE : 6825.