A New Orleans man abducted a woman who had spurned his advances and locked her up in a makeshift prison inside his home, police said.
Authorities said Mario Perez-Roque, 56, and an accomplice allegedly kidnapped the 36-year-old victim from nearby Kenner, Louisiana on Friday and brought her to his North Lopez Street double shotgun home, which was reportedly outfitted with secret compartments, cameras behind two-way mirrors and a hidden chamber.
The woman had been tied to a chair, gagged and had a bag placed over her head, but she managed to free herself when her abductors left the home, New Orleans police said. She ran for her life, making her way to a nearby bank’s parking lot before being grabbed by an unknown suspect who tried to force her into a black SUV, cops said.
A nearby NOPD officer who saw the disturbance came to her rescue, and the suspect fled in the vehicle, officials said. The woman, who does not speak English, told a police interpreter that she had just escaped from being kidnapped.
Investigators identified Perez-Roque as a suspect and members of the U.S. Marshals Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force arrested him Friday in Jefferson Parish, the Times-Picayune reported. He was charged with false imprisonment and attempted simple kidnapping. Information for his attorney was not immediately available.
The other man involved in the alleged kidnapping was still at large Tuesday and Perez-Roque was not cooperating with police, according to reports. He was being held without bond.
Police told reporters that the victim had once worked for Perez-Roque, who had tried to begin a romantic relationship with the woman. She did not appear to have any physical injuries from the incident, police said.
This is an ongoing investigation being worked by the First District Detectives, the Kenner Police Department, Louisiana State Police, Homeland Security, U.S. Marshals, Border Patrol, and the F.B.I., officials said. Anyone with information about the second suspect’s identity or whereabouts is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 504-822-1111.