TEXAS – What started out as a normal day for bank employee Jill Beatty, 60, took a turn for the worse when she came face-to-face with an armed robber.
On the morning of September 24, Beatty was the first one to arrive at First State Bank in Abilene, Texas, according to CNN affiliate KXTS.
As she went to unlock the door, a man jumped out of the bushes with a gun. He could be seen on a surveillance video forcing his way inside with Beatty at gunpoint.
The two were inside for approximately 15 minutes when a second female employee arrived at the bank. She, too, was forced inside.
That’s when Beatty jumped into action.
The 60-year-old can be seen on video jostling with the robber, pushing him back toward the door before delivering one final, swift kick. The robber struck the top of Beatty’s head with his gun before escaping through the front door.
Beatty declined to comment to CNN.
“She is a remarkable citizen. She showed remarkable calm. She never lost her head. She in fact negotiated with him,” police Chief Stan Standridge told KXTS.
Standridge on Tuesday presented Beatty with a “certificate of commendation” for her actions fighting off the robber, according to KXTS.
The robber left empty-handed thanks to Beatty’s bravery and escaped in what police described as a 2002-04 gold Cadillac.
Police described the suspect as an older black male in his 40s or 50s with partially gray facial hair, standing approximately 5’6″, who walks with a “pronounced limp in his left leg.” He was wearing “an Ed Hardy-style shirt” as well as a black ski mask.
Detectives believe that the robber is a suspected serial bank robber wanted in connection with two robberies from 2015 and 2016.