LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KATV) — Little Rock police are still looking for a gunman who robbed a young mother early Thanksgiving morning.
It happened at the Asbury Park Apartments, just hours after a separate incident involving a hold up on the same street.
But for Ashina Speaks, it was a Thanksgiving she’ll never forget, and one she hopes her two young daughters never remember.
She found herself looking down the barrel of a gun in her own home.
Channel 7 spoke exclusively with Ashina, as she addressed the gunman and explained why she’s thanking him.
“Thank you for not hurting us,” said Ashina’s three-year-old daughter.
It started out as a normal holiday—Ashina’s friend and cousin from out of town were visiting.
The adults were smoking on the front porch in the early morning hours when a man dressed in black approached them from the sidewalk, and asked for a lighter.
But when Ashina and her friend said they didn’t have one, the man flipped a switch.
“He ran up and cocked the gun, and was like ‘Y’all better not move!'” Ashina said, reenacting the way the scene went down.
According to Ashina, the gunman ordered Ashina and her friend into the apartment, where her four-month-old and three-year-old daughters were fast asleep.
“And he pushed through the door, he was like, ‘Get down!’ and he kind of pushed me like this,” Ashina said, remembering being forced onto the stair steps in the front entrance of the apartment.
Next thing she knew, she was looking down the barrel of a silver-colored gun.
“I had my hands up,” Ashina added, noting how terrified she had been—just feet from her sleeping baby—begging the gunman not to hurt her children.
“He got very aggressive and was kicking my friend. He told me that if I didn’t have kids that he would take me,” she added.
Instead, the intruder took cash and a smartphone before bolting out the front door, never to be seen again.
“It was like he was in a rage, like he had demons in him. He was angry,” Ashina recalled.
But the terror he inflicted on the young family remains.
“It’s not safe out here, it’s not safe,” she said.
Miraculously, though, instead of being angry, Ashina is thankful to the man who could have killed her and her family.
“I’m thankful. I’m not even mad at him, you know, because he didn’t hurt us.”
Ashina tells Channel 7 she plans to install an in-home security system, including a camera at her front door.