In February of this year, Baltimore Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith and his family were returning to their hotel in Los Angeles after picking up some food when they were robbed at gunpoint in the parking lot. The veteran defensive back told members of the media on Thursday that he still suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
“Terrifying. I mean, just with your family, you feel helpless,” Smith said. “Just some cowards running up on you with three guns. You don’t know if you’re going to lose your life in that moment. Your kids are right there in the car.
The incident occurred while Smith and his family were beginning their vacation in Las Angeles California. They were returning to their hotel near LAX airport after making a couple of stops to pick up food and refreshments.
“We got off the airplane, rented a car, went to the store to get some juice, and they followed us to an In-N-Out, then followed us to Jack-In-The-Box, then followed us [to the hotel] and waited for me to check-in.
“I brought the car back around, talked to my girl inside the car for like two minutes, hopped out of the car, and I saw two dudes with their mask on, and then they just kind of looked at me and kind of tracked my footsteps. The scary part was another guy ran up on my girl and put a gun to her belly, and she’s pregnant. So, it was terrifying.”
Smith admitted that he had an ominous feeling that something wasn’t right but ignored his instincts to what would ultimately be to the detriment of his entire family. Survival was the only thing on his mind when he was confronted by the masked men.
“You know, when something bad happens you get this eerie feeling?” Smith said. “I kind of had an eerie feeling, and I didn’t really listen to it. I hopped out the car and just saw dudes coming at me with guns, and they surrounded me. All you could think of is, ‘ I want to live. I want to get out of here.’
Going through such a traumatic experience where the health and safety of not only himself but his loved ones as well, still weighs heavy on the heart and mind of the former first-round pick. He is still haunted by the event to the point that even a mundane task like going to the grocery store brings about stress and anxiety.
“At that moment, jewelry didn’t matter, and none of that matters. Just give them what they want, so they can go. After it happens, you kind of have PTSD [post-traumatic stress disorder]. Going into a store, or just being around anybody in a mask and a hood on, it really kind of just makes my heart thump to this day.”
Smith knows that he is not the first professional athlete or celebrity to be robbed in LA nor will he be the last since such occurrences happen often. He also acknowledged that the likelihood of culprits getting caught and prosecuted is very low. However, even though he doesn’t wish them any harm, he believes that their day will come when they do get what they deserve.
“I’m not going to I wish death upon them,” Smith said. “But they’ll get what’s coming to them.”