Retired nurse acts heroically to help save driver Steve Utash; forces gang to stop beating

DETROIT (WXYZ) - Retired nurse Deborah Hughes was nearby when driver Steve Utash was attacked and her heroic actions likely saved his life.

Last Wednesday Utash accidentally hit an 11-year-old boy on Morang Road in Detroit. When Utash pulled over to make sure the boy was OK, he was approached and brutally beaten by a group of men.

That's when Hughes stepped in.

According to Hughes, she heard the crash and ran towards the scene. She thought someone might need her help.

"The little boy was lying there. He said his head was hurting, so I kept trying to say things to cheer him up," Hughes said.

Hughes then noticed Utash getting out of his truck.

"I saw the man get out of his truck and walk down," Hughes said. "He said 'Oh my god, did I do this? Is he alright?'"

Hughes says she cared for the little boy who had minor injuries, and then an angry crowd confronted Utash.

"And then they got him and started beating him and stomping him. It wasn't right," Hughes said.

She ran over there and told the group they needed to stop.

"I got over there and I told them 'Don't nobody hit him anymore,'" Hughes said. "I had a gun in my pocket, I was ready to do some damage if I had to."

"Somebody had to stand up. It was maybe 100 people out here. I was the only one [who stepped up]" said Hughes.

Hughes made sure Utash was cared for after the group dispersed.

"I said, 'Don't kick him anymore, don't hit him anymore, get back,'" Hughes said. "I got on the ground with him and I started tending to his wounds, and I told them 'Do not hurt him again.'"

Police arrested two teens in the beating of Utash Saturday morning. His family says they are happy because they didn't think anyone was going to get caught.

The family says they can't wait to thank Hughes for being so brave, because she gave their dad a chance at survival.

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