That's when Desantiago decided to confront the teens by grabbing the gun in her car, getting out, and waving the gun at them. At one point she held the gun to the head of a 16-year old girl.
Her husband showed up and took the gun, but the girl who was threatened then punched Desantiago a number of times before being pulled off.
In court, though the girl was admonished for being disrespectful, Desantiago was charged for threatening her, though the sentencing is very light.
From the article:
After about 80 minutes of testimony, Brice sentenced Desantiago — who has no criminal record — to 12 months with 10 months suspended on the brandishing charge and to 12 months with all but two weeks suspended on the assault count. She will be allowed to remain free on bond if defense attorney Vaughan Jones appeals.
The incident occurred about 15 minutes after a group of Meadowbrook High School students, including the 16-year-old, were dropped at their bus stop and walked through the neighborhood.
Desantiago testified that she was running late for a 3 p.m. doctor's appointment at Fort Lee and passed three teens as she was driving through the neighborhood in the 5300 block of South Jessup Road. She said the 16-year-old cursed at her, prompting Desantiago to stop to admonish the girl about her language. That led to more cursing, she said.
After driving away, Desantiago said she turned around after spotting a repairman she had called driving in the neighborhood, and as she passed the teens again, she heard more cursing as they made threatening gestures.
With her husband on his way to deal with the repairman, Desantiago said she left the house again to make her appointment, but this time about 15 people were in the street and two cars blocked her path. She said she panicked, grabbed the gun from the console and waved it at the crowd to shoo them away. "I was in fear of my life," said the mother of five.
The 16-year-old testified that Desantiago then walked up to her and placed the gun to her head. "I thought she was going to really shoot me," the girl said.
At that point, Desantiago's husband arrived and grabbed away the gun, and the girl punched Desantiago in the face; the two immediately began fighting and pulling hair. After Desantiago fell to the ground, two other girls began to kick and hit her.
Desantiago's husband managed to get his wife to her car, but the girl punched Desantiago several more times through the open car window. A woman at the scene helped pull the teen away. At her lawyer's urging, Desantiago went to Southside Regional Hospital the next day for mostly bruising to her face, neck, shoulder and legs. Photographs of her injuries were introduced at the hearing.
Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney M. Duncan Minton Jr. argued that Desantiago couldn't claim self-defense when she instigated the encounter by pulling a gun and didn't use her cellphone to call 911, or her husband, for help. She also could have turned around her car and driven away. "You don't get to claim self-defense when you're the aggressor," Minton said.
Art Desantiago testified that the gun his wife used was his, and he had placed it in the console of her car. "I keep it there for my wife," he said.