Car crashes into Mercedes-Benz showroom on Midlothian - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Car crashes into Mercedes-Benz showroom on Midlothian

By Tara Morgan - bio | email
Posted by Phil Riggan – email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - An unexpected mess at a luxury car dealership. It's not what you normally see on the showroom floor at Mercedes-Benz on Midlothian Turnpike.

There is a gaping hole in the showroom after a customer hit the gas instead of the brake – and a quick-thinking soldier came to her rescue.

He was here to shop for a new car, but instead Private First Class Antoine Purnell put his Fort Lee training to use. A  customer backed her $40,000 birthday gift into the showroom at around 2:30 Friday.

"I noticed this truck kept moving it wouldn't stop and she went through the glass," he said.

Employees at Mercedes-Benz of Richmond thought much worse was happening the moment the glass shattered.

"People thought gunshots were coming in there it was a loud explosion and a little panic," said general manager Kevin Gonzalez.

Without second thought, Purnell jumped into action.

"She was kind of panicking and everything like that so I just reached in and grabbed her out, cut the car off and away from the glass it kept falling."

Gonzalez says the woman was on the lot for a replacement key.

"Unfortunately she hit the gas pedal rather than the brake and ended up giving us a drive thru in the showroom," he said.

Purnell who's headed for his first hardship tour in Korea doesn't consider himself a hero.

"Didn't expect it, but we came that's what we train hard for anything unexpected we know how to react to it," he said.

Purnell was just shopping for a new car at the time. The woman was not hurt, just shaken up.

Police were called but no report was taken.  A building inspector determined there was no structural damage so the dealership can stay in business.  No word on just how much repairs will cost.

Copyright 2010 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.

  • Latest news from NBC12.comNEWSMore>>

  • The Latest: HHS says families won't be immediately reunited

    The Latest: HHS says families won't be immediately reunited

    Wednesday, June 20 2018 12:01 PM EDT2018-06-20 16:01:56 GMT
    Wednesday, June 20 2018 8:05 PM EDT2018-06-21 00:05:27 GMT
    (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File). FILE - In this Wednesday, June 13, 2018 file photo, Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May leaves 10 Downing Street to attend the weekly session of PMQs at parliament in London. The British government is facing anoth...(AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File). FILE - In this Wednesday, June 13, 2018 file photo, Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May leaves 10 Downing Street to attend the weekly session of PMQs at parliament in London. The British government is facing anoth...
    British Prime Minister Theresa May says the United States is wrong to separate migrant children from their parents, but has rejected calls to cancel President Donald Trump's visit to Britain next month.More >>
    British Prime Minister Theresa May says the United States is wrong to separate migrant children from their parents, but has rejected calls to cancel President Donald Trump's visit to Britain next month.More >>
  • FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Less Heat, Still humid with strong storms possible

    FIRST ALERT FORECAST:

    Wednesday, June 20 2018 6:48 PM EDT2018-06-20 22:48:49 GMT

    Get the latest forecast from the NBC12 First Alert Weather team.

    More >>

    Get the latest forecast from the NBC12 First Alert Weather team.

    More >>
  • Get an up-close look at the GRTC Pulse service

    Get an up-close look at the GRTC Pulse service

    Wednesday, June 20 2018 6:26 PM EDT2018-06-20 22:26:37 GMT
    GRTC Pulse will officially debut on June 24. (Source: NBC12)GRTC Pulse will officially debut on June 24. (Source: NBC12)

    The long-awaited GRTC Pulse transit service is just days away and on Wednesday members of the media got a first-hand look at the buses and new routes. 

    More >>

    The long-awaited GRTC Pulse transit service is just days away and on Wednesday members of the media got a first-hand look at the buses and new routes. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly