Woman allegedly kidnapped, spotted trying to get help, found

SOLVANG, Calif. -- Authorities said a woman believed to have been kidnapped by her ex-boyfriend in California was spotted at a Starbucks in Arizona as she tried to get help and was later found in Nevada.

Virginia Paris, 55, was reportedly with her alleged kidnapper, 52-year-old Joseph Hetzel, Sunday when she ordered a drink.

As she exited a restroom, she told a customer that she needed help.

Investigators said when Hetzel saw what was happening, he dragged Paris out of the Starbucks and forced her into her black 2015 Chrysler 200.

The car was last seen headed eastbound on I-10 toward Phoenix.

Police in Henderson, Nev., say Paris was found late Monday. At about 11 p.m. PT, Henderson police got a call from Railroad Pass casino security saying they had a woman who claimed she had been kidnapped. Officers responded and found Paris. She was recovered safely and sent to University Medical Center to be checked out. The suspect and the vehicle they were in are still on the run.

Paris' Chrysler has the California license plate 7NGE514.

Santa Barbara County sheriff's officials said evidence suggests that after leaving the city of Solvang on Friday, Paris and Hetzel drove southbound on Highway 101 toward Ventura County and were in the Camarillo area.

Calls to both Paris and Hetzel's phones were believed to be off or non-functioning, officials said.

Hetzel is described as a white man, approximately 6 feet 2 inches tall, about 195 pounds with brown hair and hazel eyes.

Associates of Paris reported that she recently sought a restraining order against Hetzel which was granted, but was not yet served.

Hetzel has previously served time in prison for possession of items used to make explosive devices, using explosive devices with the intent to terrorize, felony vandalism and criminal threats, sheriff's official said.

Anyone who sees Hetzel is urged to call 911. To leave an anonymous tip, call 805-681-4171 or go to sbsheriff.org/anonymoustips.

Hetzel is believed to have access to firearms and should be considered armed and dangerous. Anyone who spots Hetzel is encouraged not to approach or contact him, sheriff's officials said.
Copyright © 2019 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.