Grandmother fights off armed intruder to protect toddler granddaughter in NY

NEW YORK (WCBS/CNN) - Police are searching for the suspect who a New York grandmother says forced his way inside of her home and attacked her while she was taking care of her young granddaughter.

Stacie Vota, 58, says thankfully, besides some bruises and soreness, she is OK following the attack by a home intruder. Her granddaughter was not injured. (Source: WCBS/CNN)

Stacie Vota, 58, says her doorbell rang Monday morning while she was home with her granddaughter, so she looked out to see who was there. She cracked the door open because she thought she recognized the man as someone who did work on her house.

But when she did so, she says the man grabbed her stomach, pushed her and forced his way inside.

“I was thinking I was going to die. That was the first thought in my head was ‘I’m going to die today,’” Vota said.

Fearing for her own safety and, more importantly, the safety of her granddaughter, Vota says she did the only thing she could possibly do: she fought back.

“I started punching him, and he was grabbing at me. I was grabbing at him, and I was punching his face and kicking him,” she said. “The baby was behind me, and I knew that I had to protect that baby, my granddaughter.”

Vota says she managed to open the front door and scream for help. The suspect fled, running through the kitchen and out the back door.

The grandmother says when she went to check on her granddaughter in the kitchen, she realized the suspect had been armed.

“The baby was screaming, so I ran in to get the baby. When I looked down, there was a gigantic steak knife there that he had dropped,” she said.

Vota says thankfully, besides some bruises and soreness, she is OK. Her granddaughter was not injured.

Police scoured the neighborhood but did not find the suspect. They are still searching for him. Vota says she hopes they catch him, so he can’t attack anyone else.

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