A 25-year-old woman, who went missing from her home in Santa Ana, Calif., a decade ago has been found after she contacted authorities and reported of being kidnapped by her mother's boyfriend, who has since been taken into custody on kidnapping and sexual assault charges, media reports said Wednesday, citing police officials.
The woman, who was kidnapped when she was 15, reportedly told police that she was held captive by Isidro Garcia, a 41-year-old man who had been living with the family at the time of her disappearance. In August 2004, the mother of the victim reported a missing complaint with the police stating that her daughter and her live-in boyfriend could not be found, suspecting Garcia of sexually abusing her daughter after a domestic violence incident. Garcia was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of rape and kidnapping.
The woman, who has not been identified, contacted authorities on Tuesday after first reaching out to her sister on Facebook, police reportedly said, adding that the woman had been drugged at the time of her kidnapping and was taken to a house in Compton, about 26 miles from the victim’s house, where she was locked up overnight in a garage.
She was later provided with false identification to avoid being detected, media reports said, citing local police. The victim told police that Garcia frequently assaulted her physically and sexually. Police also said that the two worked together at a nighttime cleaning service so that Garcia could keep a constant watch over her.
"Over the course of the following months and years, Garcia repeatedly told the victim her family had given up looking for her, and if she tried to go back to them, the family would be deported," police reportedly said.
The two reportedly moved around on several occasions to avoid police detection, but had been living openly in an apartment complex for the last six years, according to the Los Angeles Times.
"Even with the opportunity to escape, after years of physical and mental abuse, the victim saw no way out of her situation and lived a life with Garcia under sustained physical and mental abuse," police reportedly said, adding that, in 2007, Garcia forced the victim into a marriage and, in 2012, the two had a child.
Neighbors at the apartment complex reportedly told police that the two looked to be a happy couple and described Garcia as a devoted family man who doted on his wife and daughter.