TIME Crime

Kidnapped California Woman Escapes After 10 Years in Captivity

Her 41-year-old alleged captor has been arrested and faces kidnapping and rape charges

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Updated at 6:55 p.m. ET

A 25-year-old missing California woman escaped from nearly a decade of captivity after contacting the police Tuesday, leading to the arrest of the man who allegedly kidnapped her.

Police in Santa Ana, California, arrested Isidro Garcia, 41, Tuesday. He faces charges of kidnapping for rape, committing a lewd act with a minor and false imprisonment.

According to an account given by the unidentified woman to the police, Garcia was living with the 15-year-old girl’s mother when he started sexually assaulting her in June 2004. Garcia allegedly kidnapped and drugged the girl after assaulting the mother in August 2004.

The victim says she was first imprisoned in a house in Compton then moved to different locations in the years that followed. Garcia allegedly obtained fake identity documents for the girl and secured employment for both of them in a night cleaning service “so he could keep a close eye on the victim,” police say. The girl said Garcia told her that her family had given up looking for her and threatened that if she called police they would be deported. In 2007, the victim said, Garcia forced her to marry him. They had a child in 2012.

Police say the victim gained the courage to contact police after communicating with her sister on Facebook.

The case comes a year to the month after three women were freed after years of captivity in a house in Cleveland. The man who imprisoned them, Ariel Castro, died while in custody of a possible suicide.

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