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Taking The Law Into Your Own Hands

Updated:
The News on 6 first told you Wednesday about an incident that happened on a walking trail near the Oklahoma Aquarium in Jenks.

Jenks Police say a man exposed himself to a woman and her child. The woman's husband chased him down and ran him off the road. While the husband may have broken the law coming to his wife's rescue, many are outraged at the thought of him being punished for it.

News on 6 reporter Heather Lewin says Jenks Police say the woman was pushing her baby in a stroller when 24-year old Robert Flores exposed himself and performed a lewd act.

The shocked woman called her husband, whom police say chased Flores' van and ran him off the road, holding him until they could make an arrest.

While no injuries were reported, police say when people take the law into their own hands; things can end badly, not just for the suspect. Tulsa Police officer Scott Walton: "We don't know the mindset of a criminal, we don't know what chemical or alcohol influences the decision that he make. We do know if he's fleeing, he certainly wants to get away."

Sometimes, enough to kill. Tulsa grocery clerk Jon Chadwick was gunned down in the summer of 2001, after chasing thieves through a store parking lot. Trying to do the right thing, but paying the ultimate price at the hands of an unpredictable criminal. While police are trained to handle these situations professionally, people involved make decisions based on emotion, sometimes the wrong one. Despite your desire to have a spouse or a friend come rushing to your aid, police say as a victim of a crime, first you should always call 911. But sometimes, family gets there first and it's only natural to be angry when a criminal hurts someone you love.

Police say your best weapon is still that cell phone; they want you to be a good witness. If that means following a criminal, keep it safe. You may think the person's getting away, but police say with today's technology, your good information is what's needed, so "they" can make the arrest.

Scott Walton: "Obviously, it's human nature when excitement presents itself and adrenaline and good judgment is hard to keep intact."

The suspected flasher is still in the Tulsa County jail, accused of indecent exposure and lewd acts in front of a minor child. Robert Flores also faces charges on a similar case from last year. The husband likely will not be charged.

While they do not advocate vigilantism, the Tulsa County DA’s office says they can't remember prosecuting such a case.
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