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A criminal in rural Centre County, PA picked the wrong woman to target late last Wednesday night.

The homeowner said as she was retrieving something from her vehicle in the driveway of her Taylor Township home around 11:30 p.m., a man came up behind her, grabbed her arm and demanded money as he pushed her head against the window.

“I opened up the car, just the door a little bit, and he backed off – thinking I was getting my purse or something. I had my pistol inside the door. So I grabbed it with my one hand. And when I spun around and he saw I had that, he took off running.”

What the suspect didn’t know was that his potential victim wasn’t any average woman, the woman he targeted was Emma Troutman – the mother of two small children and a trained law enforcement officer.

“I think it was just someone out looking for…to make some quick money, maybe steal some stuff, and they saw me out there and thought, ‘oh this will be easy.”

Troutman’s mother said this incident proves crime can happen to anyone no matter where you live and highlights the need for people to be able to protect themselves.

“Just because we’re way out doesn’t mean we’re safe and I think we do have to defend ourself (sic) just because of the response time,” Emma’s mother said.

As for Officer Troutman, she’s just thankful the suspect chose her and not someone else.

“If it would have happened to an elderly neighbor or someone that’s a little more shy, I’m afraid something worse might have happened.”

Police say the suspect has not been apprehended and the investigation is ongoing.