VIDEO: Woman escapes kidnapping attempt in New Orleans

A woman was able to escape an attempted kidnapping attempt. (Source: WVUE)
Published: Feb. 1, 2022 at 1:34 PM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE/Gray News) - A 34-year-old woman escaped two men trying to kidnap her in the Marigny Thursday night. Surveillance video captured every harrowing moment of the 15-second struggle.

The violent imagery may be disturbing to some, but it’s sparking a conversation of safety in a neighborhood where many people walk during off-hours, WVUE reported.

“I have mace on me, bear mace, actually,” said one neighbor, Madison Sullivan, who walks everywhere.

Sullivan, who grew up in Chicago, said she’s used to feeling unsafe but has never had to take this many precautions.

“There’s been a lot of shootings and kidnappings in the neighborhood lately, and I definitely don’t feel safe,” Sullivan said. “I get rides home sometimes and switch how I get home so that I can’t be followed.”

There’s no telling if the woman in the video was being followed as she walked down a well-lit, but quiet Dauphine Street just before 11 p.m.

However, you can see a dark gray sedan drive past her and stop just before the intersection of Marigny Street. That’s when the situation takes a horrifying turn.

As she passes, a masked man lunges out of the car and wraps his arms around her, whisking her towards the car. As she tries to fight him, another masked man emerges and joins in the struggle.

She’s fortunately able to pull away, and police said approaching headlights chased away her attackers.

It’s an eye-opener for some neighbors, but for many like Sullivan, who works in the service industry, this has been a fear for a while.

“Multiple people I work with have a set of tasers and knives to keep themselves safe walking home from work, and there’s like a system for people in the service industry to have someone to walk home with,” Sullivan said.

New Orleans Police Department said there have been two kidnapping incidents so far this year, 30 last year and 26 in 2020. That’s not counting attempted kidnappings like this one.

“Lately, I’ve noticed that everyone’s talking about crime. There’s an awareness of it, and there’s a fear as well,” Sullivan said. “It definitely has felt like it’s been getting worse lately, and you can just tell that by how people are, you know, how scared people are right now.”

Police are investigating. No suspects have been identified.

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