A trucker pulled over to help when he saw a car in a ditch off to the side of the road. But instead of being a rescuer, he ended up a victim.
An unnamed trucker was driving on I-29 in Holt County, Missouri. At around the 85-mile marker he saw a car in a ditch on the side of the road. So, he pulled his truck over, and went to go help.
Inside the car he found 26-year-old Jessica Koontz and her young daughter. He brought Koontz and her daughter back to his truck to wait for the authorities. Once they were inside however, Koontz allegedly pulled a flare gun and threatened both the driver and the girl. She told the trucker to keep driving.
“At that point, basically a hostage-type situation occurred,” said Sgt. Corey Root of the Missouri State Highway Patrol according to the St. Joseph News-Press. “She took her daughter — we believe it was her daughter — almost as a hostage to get the truck driver to drive her north on Interstate 29.”
The three of them drove another 26 miles before law enforcement arrived.
The driver exited the vehicle, but Koontz and the girl remained inside for a long time. The officers were eventually able to take the flare gun from Koontz and arrested her. Her daughter was taken into the care of the Atchison County Department of Family Services.
According to Sgt. Root, officials aren’t sure what prompted the incident, adding that Koontz did not have any active warrants.
Koontz was arrested and charged with felony assault, felony first-degree kidnapping and armed criminal action. She was transported to a local hospital.