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Thursday, February 4, 2010

NM Tow Truck Driver Kidnapped and Bound

Thankfully, the driver was found and unharmed after his ordeal on Jan. 28! Here's the story from KRQE News 13:

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Albuquerque police said duct tape, zip ties and a dark hood led them to a kidnapped tow truck driver on Thursday night.

On Saturday morning, the two men charged with the kidnapping met face to face with an Albuquerque Metropolitan Court Judge.

"The nature of allegations, I’m being extremely serious now, they're very serious allegations," Judge Daniel Ramczyk said.

The arrest warrant details the kidnapping of the tow truck driver, who was found bound and hooded inside a northeast Albuquerque home.

The news came as a surprise to residents who live by that house.

“After tying somebody up, I think they should keep him, keep him,” one concerned neighbor said.

In the criminal complaint, police said the victim was a Beltran Tow Truck driver. He told the officers who rescued him that he got a call Thursday night from someone needing a tow at Bob’s Burgers on Eubank and Chico.

The tow truck driver told police he and the caller met up and got out of their vehicles.

The caller told him the vehicle needing a tow was around the corner, but then shocked him with a stun gun. The driver told police another man ran up with a handgun shortly after.

Before the driver knew what happened, he had zip ties around his ankles and wrists, duct tape across his eyes and a dark hood over his head.

“The charges are kidnapping, armed robbery, aggravated battery and conspiracy,” Ramczyk said.

Someone noticed something wasn’t right and called 911.

Officers said when they showed up, they found the tied up driver inside a northeast Albuquerque house. He was being watched by Steve Arellanes, 40, and Bernardo Escobedo, 28.

Saturday morning Arellanes asked the judge to set him free without bond. The judge made it clear that wasn’t going to happen.

“You must be making a feeble attempt at humor,” Ramczyk said.

The judge kept the bond for both men at $100,000 cash only.

News 13 tried contacting the tow truck company Saturday, but no one wanted to comment.

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