‘My heart was just beating out of my chest,’ Mom grateful to be alive after armed robbery

OKLAHOMA CITY - In an instant, a quick stop at a pawn shop turned into a scramble for a mother's life, shielding her four-year-old son from robbers, armed with guns.

"I just threw my body on top of him and said 'keep your head down and stay quiet and it’ll be over with really soon,'" said Amanda Clifton, who was in the EZ Pawn on NW Expwy. Thursday afternoon, selling a piece of hardware for $15. "I was like, ‘oh my God, why is this happening when I have him with me?’"

Clifton was just about to walk out of the store when she heard several masked men burst in with handguns.

"I heard 'everybody get down on the ground,'" Clifton said. "My heart was just beating out of my chest and I just didn’t want anything to happen while I had [my son]."

Clifton tried to stay calm as one man smashed a glass jewelry counter and stole the contents.

Another pressured the clerk at gunpoint to open the cash register.

The men fled in a dark-colored sedan, captured on surveillance video.

"Even though those guys came in and they had a plan and stuff, those things can always go wrong," Clifton said. "And it only takes that one second and that one moment for somebody to lose their life like that."

Nobody was hurt during the robbery, and Clifton said she's thankful she and her son escaped unscathed.

The episode has provided lessons in the value of life, Clifton said, which she has turned into a teaching moment for her four year old.

"I understand what it’s like to be during the holiday times and not have funds and need to feed your family or buy Christmas presents," she said. "Just because you’re in that position doesn’t make it okay for you to go in and take what you need.

"I just hope everybody becomes more aware of the value of human life."