10 Years Later, Kidnapped California Woman Found Safe After Finding Her Sister on Facebook
A man was behind bars on Wednesday after a kidnapped California woman was found safe after 10 years missing. The no-longer-missing woman, who was 15 when she was taken captive, was allegedly abducted by Isidro Garcia, 41. She managed to contact law enforcement in Santa Ana, California on Tuesday. The woman got the courage to seek help after finding her sister on Facebook, police said.
The woman was reported missing by her mother in August 2004. She had disappeared along with Garcia, her mother's boyfriend. Two months prior to her disappearance, the woman told police, Garcia had begun sexually assaulting her. On the night he was kidnapped, Garcia allegedly sexually assaulted her mother. Then he drugged the 15-year-old and hid her in a garage. She was sexually, physically, and emotionally abused for years, and didn't attempt to escape — despite, police said, having had the opportunity to flee, according to the release.
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. The two moved on several occasions to avoid police detection. Garcia frequently physically and sexually assaulted the victim.
In order to continue avoiding detection, Garcia apparently got jobs for both as nightly janitors, so he could "keep a close eye on the victim." The woman was afraid to come forward, police noted.
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. In 2007, Garcia forced the victim into a marriage and in 2012 the two had a child.
But at some point recently, the woman managed to contact her sister on Facebook, the cops said. The conversation the two exchanged encouraged her to contact police.