By Pat Loeb and Steve Patterson
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia Police are asking for the public’s help finding the men who allegedly kidnapped and tortured a Jewelers Row employee on Saturday.
And they’re looking for the distinctive van the men drove.
According to investigators, the burgundy Ford Econoline — a late ’90s or early 2000s model — has white paint graffiti on its right side. Frank Banford, captain of Central Detectives, says the vehicle was seen numerous times in the last month, parked on Chestnut Street or inside the garage where the woman was abducted.
But no one got a license plate number and, even though police obtained surveillance video of the van leaving the garage, none has the license plate visible.
“Anyone with video cameras of any streets going westbound, check their cameras to see if maybe they can get a tag on this vehicle,” Banford requests.
“I can tell you she’s been through nothing short of torture. That’s what I call this,” he adds.
Banford reveals that in-between shocks and beatings — the three kidnappers would inflict psychological terror.
“They kept telling her today is the day your going to die.”
He says the victim was bound, beaten, and her life threatened. He says she had a Taser-style weapon used on her at least seven times.
“A woman brutalized for a crime that didn’t succeed. You have guys attempting to rob a jewelry store turned into petty thieves, using her ATM,” Banford notes.
More video shows the men refueling at a Wawa in the 8400 block of Bartrum. Police say it’s one of the places they use the victim’s ATM card.
Soon after, she’s dumped in a wooded area near a cemetery ten miles away in Darby Township.
Police say the men tell her to stay put, but moments later they kidnap and torture her again before she’s dropped off a second time. A passing driver calls 9-1-1.
Police announced on Wednesday that the City of Philadelphia Mayor’s Office is offering a $10,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of those responsible for this crime.