Police Officer Shares Side of Kidnapping Incident
Sergeant Linda Watts has served on the Yakima Police Department for over 25 years and has seen it all.
After working as department's crisis negotiator, yesterday's kidnapping incident was something she was prepared for.
Yesterday morning, a 15 year old girl was kidnapped by a group of three individuals -- she was waiting to be picked up by a friend, however, when the friend arrived, the suspects pointed a gun at him and placed her into the trunk.
Watts says after the suspects escaped, the friend ran to a nearby home and contacted police, who subsequently contacted the victim.
Watts was on the phone with the teen, who was able to describe the driving conditions.
"She gave excellent description, of 'we're on a smooth road,' then later 'we're on a bumpy road, we're on a windy road,'" said Watts.
'How do you know you're on a windy road?'
'Because I'm moving from side to side in the trunk by the movement of the vehicle.'
Thanks to the description and with the help of cell phone tracking, troopers were able to stop the suspect near Chinook Pass -- she was found unharmed.
The two other suspects were arrested at Highland High School, where the first suspect had dropped them off.
Watts says the teen's calm attitude and self control helped make her job that much easier.
"For her age, she was very calm," said Watts, "At times, you could tell that she was getting very anxious and she would ask, 'Do you know where I'm at?' and we tried to reassure her 'We're working on it, we're pinging your location, we have officers heading your way.' At no time was she hysterical, she did an excellent job."
Investigators don't have an exact motive for the kidnapping, however family members of the victim did tell us one of the suspects is the teen's ex-boyfriend.