PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. – An 11-year-old grabbed a pair of scissors and stabbed a man twice in the back so the man would stop attacking the child's mom, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies said the woman's 11-year-old child and 10-year-old child watched in fear Saturday night as 44-year-old Panagiotis Karamanlis punched her, pulled her hair and held her to the ground during a fight about text messages.

The woman begged Karamanlis to stop the beating, telling him, “don’t do this in front of the kids,” according to an arrest report.

The 11-year-old, fearing the mother would be killed, grabbed a pair of scissors and stabbed Karamanlis twice in the back, records show.

Deputies said the child told the mother, “Mommy, I stabbed him because I thought he was going to kill you.”

The victim's face was covered in bruises, although Karamanlis denied punching her and said he only pushed her to the ground and pulled her hair, according to the affidavit.

He faces charges of battery and child abuse. Karamanlis, who is a citizen of Greece, has been placed on an ICE hold because deputies said he made comments about wanting to leave the country.