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Woman climbing into car’s trunk was drunk, not a kidnapping victim, Calif. cops say

Watch reported kidnapping that turned out to be drunk woman getting in trunk, cops say

Riverside, California, police released video showing a reported kidnapping — but it turned out to be a drunk woman trying to get into a trunk before other passengers helped her get back into the car, police said.
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Riverside, California, police released video showing a reported kidnapping — but it turned out to be a drunk woman trying to get into a trunk before other passengers helped her get back into the car, police said.

Witnesses were right to report an apparent kidnapping attempt on Sunday in Southern California — even though that wasn’t really what had happened, police said.

Bystanders reported seeing two men trying to put the woman into a vehicle’s trunk, and then putting her into the car’s back seat near a Riverside apartment complex, police said on Facebook.

But the apparent victim was actually a woman who was drunk and belligerent after a day of swimming with her boyfriend’s family and friends at the Santa Ana River, police said in an update on Monday. She had climbed into the trunk of the car when the group stopped so that she could get something out of the back — and then two other passengers got her out of the vehicle’s rear and brought her back to the passenger compartment of the car, according to police.

Police said the abduction report came in around 7:35 p.m. on Sunday.

In police’s original description of events, posted on Facebook in the hours after the kidnapping report came in, they said the victim was a girl between 10 and 15 who “may have fought with the subjects” before they drove away with her.

Witnesses said the apparent victim was “wearing a red or pink ‘tankini’ style swimsuit,” according to police.

When detectives figured out who was involved in the reported abduction, it became clear there had been no crime, according to police. Detectives confirmed that the young woman, who was visiting from Placentia, was safe.

Riverside police say they were “grateful to the members of the community, who believed they had just witnessed an abduction, for reporting the incident and assisting in the investigation.”

Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.

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