Teen Uses Text Message to Save Family From Armed Robber & Makes Great Case for Kids Carrying Phones

OMG 22

textingNathen Lane's parents took away his cellphone privileges months ago, but fortunately for them, he retained his quick texting skills. Little did they know they'd need them when an alleged armed robber came into the Chicago smoothie shop where they were, stole the money from the register, locked 15-year-old Nathen, his 10-year-old sister, and their mother in the bathroom, then proceeded to shut the security gates on the shop and make aggressive and very sexual advances against the girl cashier.

Because of Nathen's quick-thinking and even faster texting, the convicted sex offender who burst into that shop didn't get what he came for.

In the bathroom, Nathen grabbed his mom's cell and texted their dad who was a block or so away, having left the smoothie joint to find a cup of decaf coffee. His mom wanted him to call Dad, but Nathen insisted on texting. He wrote: Don’t come robber in here call 911.

The robber came storming to the bathroom minutes later and asked if they'd called the cops and demanded they handed over their phones so he could check the call logs. Since no call was made, and since Nathen had smartly deleted the text right after he sent it, there was no evidence they'd called for help.

Thankfully, Dad knew Nathen wasn't the pranking type and called the police. They raided the smoothie shop 20 minutes later and arrested the perp -- he's being held on $1 million bail.

Nathen pretty much saved the day. Not only did he get the message to his dad, and fast, but he had the wherewithal to delete the text right away in case what happened, happened. 

Now, all Nathen wants are his cell privileges restored. He makes a great point -- carrying a phone is, in fact, putting safety first. He and his family learned that the hard way when they were locked in bathroom, but I'm sure, like most parents out there, Nathen's mom and dad took the phone away for good reason.

But when a kid's got the I-saved-our-lives card in his back pocket, it might be hard to keep a phone from him.

Do you worry about your teen's safety when or if they don't carry a phone?


Photo via HawkinsSteven/Flickr

inspiring teens, safety


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Pinkmani Pinkmani

Good for him! I think kids should always have a phone and if you want to take away their privledges either:

a) Put their sim card in an old school cell phone (Those $10 phones)

b) Turn off their data package

MsRkg MsRkg

In this day and age I think it's absolutely vital for kids to have phones. My son is 8 and we live in NYC where anything can happen in a second. I feel much more assured with him being able to contact me immediately if ever needed and vice versa. I have taught him proper phone usage skills and to date we haven't had one single problem. And with all of he parental control and apps on various phones, its really very easy to lock up a phone to do and contact only what you want it to do or make it into a very expensive paperweight lol, it's up to you.

Felly... FellyScarlett

That's how I got mine. When I was 15, a man tried to abduct me. My mom got me a cell phone that night.

cmjaz cmjaz

20 minutes later?

Christine Griffith

What an awesome and quick thinking young man a true hero


Ronni Robertson Majors

This is the reason all of my kids have cell phones...and I can track them with their phones! Even in school my kids are told to turn the volume off but never turn the phone off. You never know when you will need it fast and dont want someone hearing the sound of it turning on

Panda... PandaPop83

I believe cell phones are vital to have in this day and age. And a child's phone priviledge shouldn't trump their safety. This kid was a smart and fast thinker. If I was his mom, I'd restore his priviledges with no second thoughts about it.

Terry Ann Chadwick Winton

One item in the story doesn't jive - Nathan used his mother's cell so the message would show up from her on his dad's cell, yet the story said that his dad knew Nathan wasn't the pranking type. Otherwise - good info to know.

Kaymad41 Kaymad41

A lot could happen in the twenty minutes it took the cops to get there.  Hopefully the teenage cashier wasn't harmed any further.

tired... tiredmama42

I took phones away until we got rid of our land line.  I dont want them being home without a phone if I am not there.  

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