Yes, in 2016, heroes on horseback still exist. Nester Zepeda, a 23-year-old from the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles, was recently awarded certificates of appreciation by the Los Angeles Police Department and L.A. City Council for thwarting a robbery.
According to the Los Angeles Daily News, Zepeda was riding his horse, Palomino, near a local shopping mall when he heard a woman screaming in the parking lot. After hearing the woman scream that someone had snatched her purse, Zepeda saw the thief and immediately gave chase. Zepeda says that once the thief realized he was being chased by someone on horseback, he threw the purse back to Zepeda. He let the thief run off after noticing that Palomino was injured during the chase. Zepeda returned the purse to the woman intact.
L.A. City Councilman Mitch Englander awarded Zepeda with a hero medallion and commended him (and his horse) for getting involved. Englander: “You’ve gone over and above the call of duty for a citizen, and over and above the call of duty of a horse.”
Zepeda said he doesn’t see himself as a hero. “I just did what I could. I would like someone to do that if something like this happened to me,” said Zepeda in a news conference.