Local woman carjacked, kidnapped

March 19, 2009 9:01:33 PM PDT
A Houston woman has a terrifying tale to tell of her encounter with an armed carjacker. She said she's lucky to be alive to tell her story. [SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

Joelene Case feels blessed to be alive. She endured 15 minutes of terror last weekend and eventually got away by tricking her attacker.

Case has been without her car ever since she was carjacked and kidnapped early Saturday morning.

"I've never been so scared in my life," said Case. "I was like, 'Lord, please just don't let him shoot me, don't let this gun go off.'"

The 26-year-old was leaving an after-hours party at Ricardo's Party Hall in southwest Houston when she said a car pulled up, a man with a shotgun got out, and demanded money. She didn't have any and offered her car in return. He pushed her into the passenger seat, got in and drove away.

"He was holding (the shotgun) with his left hand and steering with his right. He had it aimed at me the whole time," said Case.

Case said he drove her to an apartment complex and kept asking one question over and over.

"He kept asking, 'Where's the money at?' That's all he was asking for was money," said Case. She thinks she was in the car with him for 15 minutes. She knows she was praying the whole time.

"I honestly thought I was going to die. I thought he was going to take my life. At one point, he pulled out a handkerchief and started to wipe down the steering wheel, wipe down the gun. I said, 'Okay he's going to ditch the car and kill me,'" said Case.

Trying to think of anything to get away, Case told the man she could get him money if he just took her to her house. He bought it. Instead she took him to her friend's house and when she couldn't get in, he got frustrated and took off.

Houston police found Case's car abandoned on Monday in the 7500 block of Corporate not far from where she was carjacked.

Case has always thought of herself as a cautious person and she vows to be vigilant and hopes others are too.

"It's happening and times are getting rough. People don't know what to do. They're desperate so they'll do anything," said Case.

She said she definitely didn't want the man to see where she lived, that's why she never went home. Houston police are investigating.

Case describes the suspect as a black male with short dreadlocks. The car that dropped him off was a dark-colored, four-door sedan with tinted windows.

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