On June 25, 2015, two Pittsfield cops responded to a disturbance call that nearly ended in tragedy. Unbeknown to the brave pair, they were sent to the wrong address by an idiot working in police dispatch. As a result, officers Dale Eason and Jennifer Brueckmann haplessly stumbled into the lair of a madwoman. Taken by surprise, hopelessly out maneuvered, the officers stared into the face of their own mortality.
Whom had they come up against? What female could strike so much fear into the hearts of highly trained law enforcement? Had they confronted mixed martial artist, Ronda Rousey? Nope. Perhaps they’d encountered powerhouse Kristy Scott, who squats 465 pounds and deadlifts 545 pounds? Nope. Were they about to face off with middleweight boxing champion Kali Reis? Again, nope. They’d entered the home of 88-year-old Phyllis Stankiewicz. A little old lady who was home alone, peeling apples to make applesauce.
Armed with only handguns, pepper spray, tasters, and batons, the officers were no match for Phyllis. A radio plea for backup? No time. Things quickly escalated as Phyllis dug in and stood her ground. Wielding a tiny paring knife in one hand, she slapped one of the officers in the face with the other, unleashing all the strength she could muster. It was only through the grace of God that Eason and Brueckmann were eventually able to subdue Phyllis and haul her off to jail. If the skirmish had continued much longer there’s no telling how much carnage the cornered 88-year-old would have wreaked. She might have thrashed officers with a rolling pin. Or perhaps she intended to blind them by hurling flour into their eyes.