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Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones is all about uncovering motives. When her purse was almost stolen, she had every right to call the police. She could have called the police, pressed charges, and "gotten justice". But Luella isn't concerned with that type of justice. She wants to understand why the young man tried to steal her purse in the first place. So she disarms him of his emotions by taking him back to her house. She gives him food and allows him to tell his story. She discovers that he is poor and needs the money, so she gives him some money. She gives him exactly what he doesn't deserve because she uncovered the fact that he wasn't a hardened crimminal who needed prison. She discovered that he was a young kid who needed help.
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