Crime Trackers: Mother of carjacking victim credits God for savi - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

Crime Trackers: Mother of carjacking victim credits God for saving son's life

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TUCSON -The man who survived a harrowing life-changing experience speaks out about his ordeal.

 25-year-old Irving Hernandez was taken hostage on Wednesday by a man who went on a crime spree.

 The unidentified suspect remains hospitalized after getting shot. Sources tell News 4 Tucson he is on a ventilator.

It's now known whether it was self-inflicted or a sheriff's deputy shot him.

Hernandez said, "When he was about to kill me I prayed to God for forgiveness and to save us."

Hernandez said his prayers were answered.  "God came through with a miracle he had his angels wrapped around me and saved my life."

He said it all started Wednesday afternoon outside his house. He heard a gunshot and glass breaking. 

His mother, Evangelina Barrela, went out to see what was happening and the suspect approached her pointing a gun and demanded the keys to the Camaro sitting in their carport.

She got the keys and threw them at the suspect.

She said he raised the gun and pulled the trigger, but the bullet missed her.

Her son went into action trying to wrestle the gun from him. He then got pistol whipped.

Hernandez says he was dragged into the Camaro and they sped off. 

During the entire time, Hernandez said, "He was just pointing his gun at me even when he placed me into a headlock, even when he was driving, he still had the gun pointed at my head."

Sheriff's deputies spotted them; Hernandez said the suspect became "paranoid, anxious all at once. He didn't know whether to shoot me first or to shoot the police."

A high-speed chase followed, Hernandez said the suspect was driving 80 to 100 mph the wrong way.  At one point the Camaro just gave out.

"He told me 'This is where it ends and is ready take the silver chain off my neck and I hope you can pray for us both.' "

After waiving the gun back and forth from Hernandez to sheriff's deputies, Hernandez was placed in a headlock and forced to look down. He said he didn't know whether the suspect shot himself in the head or if he pointed the gun at officers. All he knows as the officer took a shot.

Hernandez said that was his only chance to escape because he didn't know whether the suspect was still alive or not.

Sheriff's deputies grabbed him, taking him to safety. Meanwhile, his mother's prayers were also answered.  She said she believes in God and knows that he made this miracle happen by protecting her son.

Hernandez added, "I believe my mission in life is not over yet. I still have something to do in this life and God told me it’s not my time yet. And I’m thankful for that."

Hernandez said this experience taught him to live life to the fullest and tell those you care about that you love them.

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