Man jumps into woman's car, makes her drive, steals her money but gives her $5 for gas

SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - A local woman, four months pregnant, was traumatized when a man ran into traffic on Statesville Boulevard Wednesday night, jumped into her car and made her drive away.

"It really shook me up," the woman told WBTV.  "It was hard to sleep last night."

According to the police report, the incident began when a witness called police to report a fight taking place in the parking lot of the Exxon gas station near Majolica Road on Statesville Boulevard.

The witness described seeing one man down on the ground with another man on top of him, and several other men standing around the two.

The man on the ground was later identified as Brian Nathen Covington, 29, of Westover Avenue in Kannapolis.

After taking several items from the man on the ground, the other men started to walk away while Covington got up and started running into traffic.

Investigators say Covington then spotted a car that had stopped and that had the windows down.  Covington ran to the passenger's side of the car, reached in and unlocked the door, then jumped in the car and told the young woman behind the wheel to drive away.

"I didn't know what to do," the woman told WBTV. "He just walked up to my door  and got in before I could say anything or do anything."

While in the car Covington took money from the woman's pocketbook, according to police. After driving over to Rowan Mill Road and Highway 29, Covington made the woman stop at the Pit Stop gas station where he got out of the car and started walking south.

But the woman told WBTV that before Covington got out, he offered to pay her for the gas she used to drive him around.  He gave her $5 then took off.  She then realized the $5 bill was part of her money Covington had taken.

"I just wanted him to get out," the woman added.  "I'm four months pregnant, all I could think about was my baby."

By this time officers had broadcast the information about the incident across the county.  Police spotted Covington still walking on 29 and arrested him.

Covington was charged with Larceny, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, and felonious restraint.  Bond was set at $12,000.

Police also determined that the original disturbance in which Covington was on the ground in the Exxon parking lot came about because the men said Covington had stolen items from them.

The men chased Covington and held him down, taking their items back.  Police were also able to recover the money Covington allegedly took from the driver of the car.

The woman told WBTV that the man never showed a weapon, but that he did have something in his hand that was a cause for concern.

"My original thought was to tell him to get out, but I was scared to death," the woman said. "He had blue jeans wadded up in a big ball and I didn't know what was inside of them, but  he never showed me anything."

The woman is going to the doctor today just to make sure that everything is alright.  She was not injured, but other than being "stressed out."