Police: Woman kidnapped from gas station by ex-con

FT. WRIGHT, Ky. - Police in Northern Kentucky say a 20-year-old woman waskidnapped from a gas station by a man who was released from prisonlast month.

Police say 34-year-old Jerry Smith knocked on the woman's carwindow at the Speedway gas station on Madison Pike, around 9:30p.m. Thursday, forced his way into the vehicle, put a knife to herthroat and demanded that she drive him to Georgetown.

The Independence woman somehow convinced Smith to pull over neara rest stop along southbound I-75 in Scott County around 11 p.m.and ran away for help screaming, according to police.

Smith also ran from the car, crossing over the interstate andheaded northbound to another rest stop.

Police were alerted to that rest area after a suspicious personhad not come out of the bathroom.

"I came back in about 45 minutes later doing my rounds again andhe was still in there in the same spot. [He] hadn't moved," saidthe employee who discovered Smith.

Officers arrived around 1:20 a.m. and arrested Smith whoadmitted to the kidnapping. He is charged with kidnapping,terroristic threatening, wanton endangerment and publicintoxication and is currently behind bars at the Scott CountyDetention Center.

Smith was released from prison on Dec. 10, 2010 after servingnearly 10 years for rape, kidnapping, gross sexual imposition androbbery. He was then referred to the Volunteers of America halfwayhouse on Dec. 13.

Authorities say he walked away from the Volunteers of Americahalfway house in Cincinnati while he was on approved externalactivity on Thursday and failed to return at noon. Upon his failureto return, the halfway house contacted the Ohio Adult ParoleAuthority and an alert was issued.

Police say there is no rape in this case and the woman, whosename is not being released, was not injured.

"The victim was not harmed, other than the trauma of goingthrough having a knife to her throat and being threatened withdeath," said Police Chief Daniel Kreinest of the Fort Wright PoliceDepartment.

The victim's bold move-- stopping the car-- probably saved theyoung woman's life according to Chief Kreinest.

“An arrest was made. Once the abduction had occurred, thisis probably about as good as anybody could have expected," Kreinestsaid.

The incident remains under investigation.

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