Girl chewed through restraints in bold escape from week of captivity in Alabama

Girl chewed through restraints in bold escape from week of captivity in Alabama
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A kidnapped 12-year-old chewed through her restraints, breaking the braces on her teeth, to escape a week of captivity in Alabama, investigators said Tuesday.

The girl was abducted on July 24 and tied to bed posts for a week, as suspect Jose Paulino Pascual-Reyes, 37, kept her in a “drugged state” with alcohol, according to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday in Tallapoosa Circuit Court.

The victim was found walking on an Alabama road Monday morning, leading to the discovery of two decomposing bodies inside a nearby home.

Pascual-Reyes has been charged with kidnapping, two counts of murder and two counts of corpse abuse, court records showed.

He is accused of killing 34-year-old Sandra Vazquez Ceja by allegedly smothering her with a pillow and then cutting her body into pieces “in order to hide evidence,” according to criminal complaints filed Wednesday.

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Sheriff Jimmy Abbett of Tallapoosa County, Ala., at a press conference following the rescue of a 12-year-old girl who had managed to escape from captivity on August 1, 2022.WSFA

It wasn’t immediately clear how Ceja might be related to the other murder victim, identified only as a boy under 14, or the kidnapped girl.

The boy’s death was caused by the suspect “striking him with his hands and feet,” a complaint said.

The kidnapping and murders all happened on July 24 with the abduction intended to “violate or abuse sexually and did so by restraining (the victim) … to bed posts for one week,” the complaint said.

The victim “had broken braces from chewing out of her restraints,” authorities said, adding that “deputies observed marks on the victim’s wrists indicative of being restrained.”

The girl was found walking on a road Monday morning before she was found at about 8:30 a.m. and later led authorities to the bodies inside a nearby home, officials said.

Tallapoosa County Sheriff Jimmy Abbett called the girl a “hero.”

It wasn’t immediately clear if the suspect had hired or been assigned a criminal defense lawyer.

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