Michelle Boutin calls herself "a shy person from Minnesota," but her reserve disappeared when she spotted someone driving down the street in her 1985 Subaru, stolen a week earlier as she left it warming up in her driveway.
"It never crossed my mind to be concerned for my safety," Boutin, 33, said Friday of her attempt to reclaim her car. "I've been really angry about it being stolen."Boutin, a 5-foot-4 attorney and mother of two young girls, was driving home from work earlier this week when she saw what appeared to be her stolen car coming in the other direction.
She caught the first three letters of the license plate, checked behind her and made a quick U-turn. Luckily, the light at a major intersection turned red, putting her directly behind her Subaru.
Boutin said she jumped out of her rented car and started pounding on the driver's window of the Subaru.
She yelled at a jeep full of high school boys to help and they positioned themselves so the man in Boutin's stolen car could not drive off. The car in front of him did not move when the light turned green, blocking him.
Screaming at the driver, Boutin yelled, "This is my car! Get out of it!"
"I think I would have gone so far as to jerk him out of the car," Boutin said. "I wouldn't have gone so far as to punch him, although I thought of it. He had this attitude like, man, you're really wrecking my day."
A witness to the scene apparently called police. The driver, who was caught a short time later a few blocks from the scene, told police he did not know the car was stolen. He was charged with criminal mischief and resisting arrest.
Boutin's car, which is nearly paid off, was returned in good condition.
"They (the police) said I did a great job," said Boutin. "Chalk one up for the victim."