December 27, 2011 in Nation/World

Hostages rescued via Facebook post

Jennifer Dobner Associated Press
 

SALT LAKE CITY – A Utah woman used Facebook to get help after she and her 17-month-old son were held hostage at a residence for nearly five days, police said.

Police Sgt. Jon Arnold said the woman hid in a closet with a laptop to post her plea for help on the social networking website, saying she and her son would be “dead by morning” if they were not rescued.

The post prompted someone to call police, who went to the home to check on the woman’s welfare.

“Facebook was her only outlet that she had at the home,” Arnold said. “It just happened that she was able to use it.”

Police arrested Troy Reed Critchfield, 33, and booked him into jail Saturday for investigation of aggravated kidnapping, forcible sodomy, aggravated assault, domestic violence, child abuse, animal cruelty and other charges.

Salt Lake County Jail records show Critchfield initially refused to let police in the house.

The papers say the woman shook her head to indicate “no” when officers asked if she was OK.

After police separated the couple, the woman told officers she and her child had not been allowed to leave the home and that she repeatedly had been hit, choked and sexually abused over a period of nearly five days.

“She claims that any time she went to go to a door, he physically assaulted her,” Arnold said.

© Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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