Woman runs off, leaves girl behind when man with knife attacks

Woman runs off, leaves girl behind when man with knife attacks »Play Video
The man with the knife grabs the girl's backpack as her mother runs (lower left).

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – An armed attack and the reaction of a mother who left her young daughter behind has sparked controversy.

A security camera at a market in Springfield, Massachusetts, caught the incident on video.

In the video, a woman with a little girl about 4 years old is set upon by a man with a knife outside the store.

The mother quickly turns and runs off, leaving the small child standing next to the knife-wielding assailant, who tries to grab her.

According to WGGB in Springfield, police said the man demanded the woman’s purse but she ran. The man then grabbed her 4-year old daughter, put the knife to her and threatened he would hurt the girl if the woman didn’t come back.

The man grabs the child’s backpack, which separates from her, and the suspect apparently pursues the woman out of view of the camera as the child runs away from him.

“It appears the woman was thinking on her feet, figuring he wanted the purse, she ran away to get him away from the little girl,” Springfield Police Sergeant John Delaney told WGGB.

Moments later, the woman is seen struggling to get inside the store as the man attacks her with the knife. The woman manages to get inside the store as the suspect runs off. The child remains out of view of the camera.

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries and the girl was not hurt. Police are looking for the suspect and said they did not feel the mother acted inappropriately.