Clark County 911 caller escapes restraints, gets help for friend pushed down steps

Credit: Marshall Gorby

Credit: Marshall Gorby

Women were locked in Moorefield Twp. basement; suspect arrested in Indiana

Charles E. Womack, 49, of Zanesfield, was arrested by the Allen County Sheriff’s Office near Ft. Wayne, Indiana, according to a release from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.

He is suspected of severely injuring one woman and tying the other on Tuesday, as well as taking the bound woman on multiple trips over the course of five hours.

Clark County Sheriff’s deputies and a medical helicopter responded to a report of a woman tied up and another severely injured locked in a basement Tuesday afternoon in Moorefield Twp. in Clark County.

Emergency crews responded to the 600 block of Hiser Avenue off Derr Road and found two women in the basement, said Maj. Christopher Clark of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.

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The restrained woman had been the one to call 911, the sheriff’s office said. She told dispatchers in a 14-minute call that she was the homeowner and was barricaded in the basement with her tenant, according to 911 records.

“He said he was leaving. We’re locked in the basement, I can’t open the door!” she told dispatchers.

On investigation, the sheriff’s office said that Womack was a casual dating partner of the homeowner and came to visit earlier in the day.

The man reportedly pushed the homeowner’s tenant down a flight of stairs into the basement she lived in after Womack initiated a disagreement with the tenant. The tenant fell down more than a dozen stairs and was bleeding profusely from her left leg for five hours, the caller said.

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The homeowner told dispatchers that she became involved with the argument, and Womack pulled her by her hair and tied her with extension cords. He then transported her to his house.

Upon finding he forgot his house keys, he took the homeowner back to her residence, the caller said.

He reportedly placed the homeowner in the basement, barricading the basement door and then drove away, according to 911 records. The caller told dispatchers that she didn’t think he was armed.

The caller was able to break from her restraints and contact dispatch 10 minutes after Womack left. She comforted her tenant and tended to her injury as emergency personnel were en route.

“You will not stay stuck down there, I promise,” the dispatcher said. “You’re doing a great job.”

CareFlight landed in the area about 5:20 p.m. on Tuesday and took the injured woman to Miami Valley Hospital for treatment of life-threatening injuries, the sheriff’s office said. She remained hospitalized Wednesday, according to the sheriff’s office, but details about her condition were unknown.