EL CAJON, Calif. (KGTV) -- Police officers in east county started a fundraiser to help an MTS employee who is being hailed a hero.
Iesha Booker’s quick-thinking saved valuable time in getting a severely injured officer medical help when he was brutally attacked by a suspect Monday morning in El Cajon.
It turns out, Booker happens to be homeless. She's a working, single mother, living out of her car with a baby and toddler.
“I’ve been coming to work, trying to get us enough money to get us a place to stay,” Booker said Tuesday afternoon.
Many nights, Booker sleeps in a car with her 10-month old baby and a three-year-old. On the lucky nights, she gets a hotel room or stays with friends. Her other five children stay with family.
The El Cajon Police Officer’s Association started a GoFundMe page for Booker, hoping to raise $50,000 to get her and her seven children a place to live and be able to catch up on her car payments.
Booker said she and her children lived in the same home for six years, but recently, the landlord decided to sell it. She did not have money to move into a new place.
So, there was already a lot on her mind when she took her lunch break Monday morning at a KFC on Fletcher Parkway in El Cajon.
Inside, Booker saw a man, who police said is Daniel Cook, 42, attack and beat El Cajon Police Officer Jose Sioson until, and even after, he was unconscious, police said. The attacker then walked out of the restaurant.
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“I went over to the officer and tried to see if he was alive,” Booker said.
She called for help on his police radio.
“Just screaming in there, they have an officer down, they have an officer down, and I was hoping they heard me because I didn’t know how to work the walkie-talkie,” Booker said.
That call got help there faster than calling 911. The police officers arranged for Booker to stay in a temporary shelter.
Sioson suffered facial injuries and was released from the hospital Thursday. Cook was arrested and faces a mayhem and attempted murder charge, among others.
As of Friday evening, people donated more than $13,000 to the GoFundMe page for Booker.
“Now I need help, and I didn’t think I had any, and all of the sudden my life changed in one day,” Booker said. “I’m very grateful for everybody who has donated.”
Booker will soon be able to afford to rent a home, but getting a landlord to rent to her and her children is a challenge, she said.
“I’ve been denied seven times already, houses, apartments,” Booker said. “The first thing they ask me is how many kids do you have."
Her credit is not the best, but she works full-time and has held the same job for three years.
She wants to thank people who donated to her. If you are a San Diego landlord, or homeowner, who is interested in renting to Booker and her seven children, please email the reporter at: firstname.lastname@example.org.