An alert convenience station worker noticed a woman in desperate need of help and prevented her from being allegedly kidnapped.
Rachel Craddock was working at a Citgo in Inverness, Florida.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies said Cody Jackson, 32, got into a fight with a woman Sunday morning. They said Jackson hit the woman on the head with a piece of wood and pushed her into a car before driving away. At one point, deputies said, Jackson pulled over and tied the woman’s ankles and wrists with extension cords.
Eventually, Jackson stopped at the convenience store and while inside, the woman was able to get out of her bindings. Jackson saw, and he ran from the store to stop her.
“At that point, that’s where the victim saw their chance to survive and was able to break free from these restraints and get out of the car and ask for help,” Natalia Verdina, a sheriff’s office spokesperson, told WFTS.
“He seen the girl that he had bound in the car escaping from the car and he started running out the door. While he was running out the door, she was running to my private door that was locked,” Craddock told WTVT. “She was banging on it, saying, ‘Help me! Help me! Help me! He’s gonna kill me! He’s right there. He’s right there.’ And I hurried up and unlocked the door, and I pulled her in, and I locked that door.”
The woman had a deep cut to her head. Craddock had locked all the doors to the Citgo and called 911.
“Extension cords around her arms and she had matted hair with blood, and all I could think was, get her safe into the store with me,” Craddock told WTVT.
Jackson drove away and the sheriff is looking for him, warning the public that he could be armed and not to confront him. The car was found abandoned in Tampa, WFTS reported.