A local woman, fearing harm from a man in the back seat of her car, reportedly locked herself in a grocery store rest room until police found her and arrested the man, Antonio Levell Washington.
Washington, who law enforcement agents have called the “main source of heroin in Rice County,” was out on bail after being charged in November with selling heroin and with five counts of violating an order for protection, all on the same victim and all felonies.
The latest incident, which began about 9 p.m. Sunday, when Washington reportedly approached the victim outside her home. Washington allegedly told the woman that he needed to get some things from her house and a key so he could stay there.
Once inside, he reportedly locked the door and went through her purse, taking money and her driver’s license. He allegedly had her unlock her phone, then went through her messages and got her phone number. In a search of her mail, he discovered documents showing the victim planned to testify against him in a case of domestic assault, according to a criminal complaint.
Enraged, Washington reportedly threatened the victim and in a profanity-laced tirade told her when she goes to court she and her children need to say that nothing happened. He later told her that 10 years prior he’d been charged with assaulting two women, and reportedly beat one of the women so she refused to testify. He then demanded that the victim do the same.
The woman reportedly tried to call 911 before leaving the house and from several other locations after Washington told her to get in the car and drive. Police, in their report, said that the victim did not go with Washington willingly, but out of fear.
While in the car, Washington allegedly told the woman that she was not going to “make it to work” that night, and that he had “nothing to lose” and planned to go on the run.
As the victim drove through town, she reportedly made excuses about stops she needed to make. Once inside, she made quick calls to 911 in hopes that officers could track her whereabouts. Officers reportedly found the victim in the store bathroom; Washington was in the rear seat of her car.
Washington was charged with kidnapping and witness tampering, both felonies. He’s also been charged with violating a domestic abuse no contact order, a misdemeanor.
His next appearance in court on the most recent charge is Jan. 12. He’s back in court Jan. 18 on the heroin and previous no contact order violations.