A group of women holding a jewelry party in Florida were chanting “Jesus” during an armed robbery that scared the intruder.
Derek Lee, 24, was wearing a mask and brandishing a firearm when he allegedly entered a Lake City, Fla., home and attempted to rob the house, News4Jax.com reported.
One of the 14 women attending the party thought the gunman was part of a joke, and pushed his hand away and laughed, saying “it’s only a water gun,” according to the website.
According to Lake City police, Lee then held up the gun to the woman’s head. “I’m not joking, I’m going to shoot someone, give me your money.”
That’s when Jacquie Hagler, the homeowner, invoked Jesus, which set off chanting that scared the intruder.
"When I realized what was going on, I stood up and said, 'In the name of Jesus, get out of my house now.' And he said, 'I'm going to shoot someone.' And I said it again, real boldly," Hagler told News4Jax.com. "Everybody started chanting, 'Jesus, Jesus, Jesus,' and he did a quick scan of the room, and ran out the door as fast as he could go."
Donna Bowen, one of the party’s attendees, credited God with saving her life during the home invasion.
“You knew that God's hand... He was in there. It could have went so differently,” she said, according to The Daily Mail.
Lee was arrested Friday after some of the women identified him in a photo lineup, the website reported. The alleged intruder was taken to Columbia County Detention Center on home invasion robbery charges and held on $200,000 bond.
Despite being scared from the home invasion, Hagler said she hoped Lee finds Jesus.
"I have forgiven him and prayed for his salvation,” she told News4Jax.com. "I'm hoping this situation has led him to trust the lord and turn his life around."
Lee is also being investigated for attempted robbery, with police trying to determine whether the 24-year-old robbed an ATM just moments before the home invasion, UPI reported.