, Salem, MA

Local News

June 28, 2013

Details of kidnap hoax emerge from court papers

Hoax: Police say woman's story changed many times


After her friend left, she said, two men burst in, punched her, grabbed her, covered her mouth and told her if she cooperated, she would be OK. She said the men forced her to drive to the highway and then ordered her into the trunk.

She admitted that she had her cellphone with her in the trunk the entire time but tried only to call the friend she had been drinking with earlier, not police. Her purse was in the front seat.

Later, she was interviewed again by officers, telling them that she had spent her day with another friend, then went to Tavern in the Square in Salem for drinks. Then, she headed to the Black Lobster to meet another friend.

As she went to use the ladies room, she said the Albanian men approached, offering her a drink, which she accepted.

“Come work for us and make a lot of money,” she said they told her. She said she was “all set” and thanked them for the drink. But later that night, they approached again, offering her a ride.

In that interview, however, she said she was no longer sure who drove her home.

At home, she was on Facebook when she saw a black car outside, according to the report. She told a friend on Facebook, a man serving with the Army in Nuremberg, Germany, to call police, which he apparently did.

Then, two men came into her room, she told police.

Police expressed concern that she might have been sexually assaulted, and she agreed to go to the hospital with them to be examined. But at the hospital, she suddenly changed her mind.

And by this time, investigators had found no evidence of anyone else, such as fingerprints, in her car.

Police took her back to the station, where she soon admitted that she’d made the whole thing up because she was afraid of being charged with drunken driving.

The officers returned her laptop, her cellphone and her purse and told her where she could pick up her car.

Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, via email at or on Twitter @SNJulieManganis.

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