Police corner alleged abductor at Falkville gas station
A woman from Shelbyville, Tenn., last week was allegedly kidnapped by her ex-boyfriend, but his plot was foiled when he was arrested at a Falkville gas station.
Officers with the Falkville Police Department were called to Love’s Travel Center off Exit 322 at 10 a.m. Aug. 17 when a woman entered the gas station and told a clerk she had been kidnapped.
According to the police report, the 20-year-old unnamed woman left her home in Tennessee home around 7 a.m. and told authorities she had been driving for only two minutes when her ex-boyfriend exited her trunk, threatened her with a taser and pepper spray and handcuffed her. Authorities said the woman’s ex-boyfriend and father of her one-year-old child, Samuel Gomez-Benicio, 22, forced the woman to drop off her child at Gomez-Benicio’s mother’s house and swap vehicles before continuing their journey south into Alabama.
“It was when they transitioned into the van that she realized all her child’s belonging were in the vehicle, and it clicked, that he had this all premeditated out,” Falkville Police Chief Aaron Burgess said.
The victim had an outstanding Protection from Abuse order against the suspect, according to authorities, who said Gomez-Benicio has a history of both physical and emotional abuse toward the victim.
Burgess said the victim said she was afraid for her life throughout the nearly five-hour incident. “She is convinced they were headed to Texas and his plan was to kill her and dispose of her body,” Burgess said.
Having diffused the situation enough to convince Benicio to make a pitstop for gas and food in Falkville, the victim went inside the service station, asked a clerk to follow her to the bathroom and asked for the police to be called, Burgess added.
Authorities found Gomez-Benicio in possession of pepper spray, and handcuffs and a taser were found in the vehicle.
Burgess said Gomez-Benicio briefly resisted arrest.
“Due to the fact that this crime was multi-jurisdictional and across state lines, typically we would push to the federal level,” Burgess said. “They just initiated in Huntsville the FBI North Alabama Violent Crimes Task Force … What they do is deal with anything from homicides, kidnappings, sexual assaults. They come over and assist and work with us when these things happen.”
Gomez-Benicio was booked in the Morgan County Jail and was charged with first-degree kidnapping with a $10,000 bond.