Man tried to steal Pelican’s owner’s car while she was still in it

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Gayle Benson, the owner of the New Orleans Pelicans and the NFL’s Saints, got a scare recently when she was sitting in the back seat of her car and a man rushed in and tried to steal the vehicle.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune had the details.

The man abandoned his plan when Benson screamed for him to get out. Investigators are now searching for a suspect, the Saints and New Orleans police said…

According to police, someone parked a white Nissan Titan directly next to Benson’s car in the 6200 block of South Claiborne Avenue about 2:15 p.m. last Saturday, Oct. 10. A man emerged from the Titan and got into Benson’s car, police said…

“While she was very shaken at the time, she was unharmed and is doing fine,” Bensel said in a statement Friday. “She wanted to send her sincere gratitude to the men and women of the New Orleans Police Department that responded so quickly and professionally.”

First and foremost, it’s just good news Benson was not hurt in the incident.

No arrests have yet been made. As noted in the story, crime is down this year in New Orleans, including carjackings (down 18%) and auto theft (down 76%). Benson was in the wrong place at the wrong time, but was fortunate it did not turn out worse.