Former Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber and his family were getting ready for church Sunday when his wife noticed a strange car outside.
Thinking it could be someone who was lost, or that their car could have been disabled, Yarber went to check it out.
As he was walking down the driveway, Yarber said he saw the door to his truck swing open, and instinctively he kicked it. A man fell out of the truck.
The alleged intruder, identified by police as 22-year-old Juwan M. Bibbs, will probably remember Sunday for a long time to come.
Yarber, who is not a small man, grabbed Bibbs and pulled him into the garage so that he could have cover while he subdued him.
"I wasn't sure if there was a second person, so I didn't want to stay out in the open," he said.
When he flipped Bibbs over was when his mindset changed just a bit. The alleged intruder looked like a kid who went to Yarber's church.
"He said some things that made me mad," Yarber said. "He asked me not to kill him because he's got a 2-month-old baby, and I'm like, 'My kids are in my house right now.'"
That's when Yarber's instincts as a former school principal kicked in. He sent his daughter inside to get his paddle, and proceeded to sit on Bibbs and paddle him on the backside.
At one point, Yarber can be heard talking to Bibbs on the video made by his son.
"When you break in people's stuff, it's because somebody ain't whooped your tail," he said as he swung the paddle.
"I wasn’t gonna kill him, but if he was gonna go to jail and be out the next day I wanted him to know why he went," Yarber said.
When Jackson Police Department arrived on scene, Yarber said the first officer told the alleged intruder, "Wrong house, homeboy."
But shortly after that was when police found a gun believed to belong to Bibbs. When Yarber had kicked the truck door, it appears that Bibbs was separated from the weapon. Knowing that Bibbs may have been armed and what could have happened was a sobering feeling, the former mayor said. He's grateful that he and his family are safe.
He's also glad that he chose mercy, though he doesn't take credit for the instincts that led to it.
"People keep talking about lethal force, but I don’t want to take any more credit than I should, but I guess if I’m putting on my other hat, my restraint came from God," he said.
He said if there's a takeaway from the incident, he just wants people to remember to respect themselves and other people, and to take care of each other.
"I just want folks to be vigilant and take advantage of opportunities to look out for others and themselves. We’ve got to care about each other," he said.
Bibbs has been charged with auto burglary and possession of marijuana. Bibbs has had his initial court appearance and is still being held in the Hinds County Adult Detention Center on $20,000 bond. It is unclear at this time if he may have had accomplices and who they might.
Yarber is the pastor at Relevant Empowerment Church, where he has continued to have a voice in the community since the end of his term as mayor. He can be found on Instagram, where he shares inspirational thoughts and posts.