Fresno Macy's employee escaped knife-wielding kidnapper

FRESNO, Calif.

Police Chief Jerry Dyer says the victim is dealing with emotional trauma but was not physically harmed. He says she did the right things like paying attention to surroundings, cooperating when she needed to and escaping when she had the chance.

Chief Dyer adds, "We will solve this case, we will apprehend this individual."

The chief says they are looking for the man who kidnapped a 20-year-old Macy's employee on Tuesday. It all began in the south corner of the Macy's parking area at Fashion Fair Mall. Police say the woman arrived at work -- pulled in to a parking space and was then approached by a stranger.

"He was armed with a knife got into the passenger side of the car demanded money from her," said Chief Dyer.

Once the man learned she didn't have any money, Dyer says he ordered her to drive from the mall to her bank -- to withdraw money from a Chase ATM.

Chief Dyer said, "She got out of the vehicle and he remained in the vehicle."

But she did not try to escape. Instead, she got back in the car and handed over the cash.

"She had fears she would be further harmed if she attempted to run from him that's what prompted her to get back into the vehicle," said Chief Dyer.

Once she did the suspect ordered her to drive back to the mall -- the victim told police during that time the kidnapper tried to force her to commit a sexual act. When she reached the stoplight at Santa Ana and Fresno she chose that moment to get away.

Chief Dyer said, "What she did was stepped on the gas, and accelerated it, jumped from a moving car then ran from it."

Dyer says the victim did what she thought was best and it worked.

Police say they have lots on leads on the suspect. They are looking for an African American male, 6 foot one, with a thin build. He was last seen wearing jeans, green boxer shorts and a gray shirt.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.