Massachusetts police say that a 7-year-old girl is lucky to be alive after she was kidnapped, choked, and thrown off of a bridge and left for dead early Sunday morning.
As MassLive reported, the alleged abductor has been identified by the victim and police as 35-year-old Joshua Hubert of Worcester. The abduction reportedly took place while the 7-year-old was asleep on a chair in her grandparents’ home.
According to authorities, Joshua Hubert had been a guest at a cookout at the home on Forestdale Road, and has been described as a “family friend.” Hubert is accused of nabbing the sleeping 7-year-old and forcing her into his car at sometime around 2:30 a.m.
Prosecutors say that after he got his 7-year-old victim into his vehicle, he drove around with the terrified girl for over an hour. According to the young victim, there was a point in the abduction that Hubert stopped driving and viciously choked her. After the violent strangling, the alleged kidnapper reportedly drove his victim to a bridge between Shrewsbury and Worcester and threw the 7-year-old over the side.
Amazingly, after the victim landed in Lake Quinsigamond, she was able to swim to shore. From there, the brave 7-year-old walked to a home nearby in Shrewsbury where she pleaded with the shocked residents for help.
At this time, investigators are unsure which bridge the victim was thrown from, but believe that it is likely that Joshua Hubert threw her from the I-290 bridge after he kidnapped and choked her, based on where she emerged from the water. Prosecutor Cheryl Riddle only referred to “a bridge” when the accused was arraigned on Monday.
“At approximately 4:30 a.m., about two hours later, a woman from Shrewsbury was awoken by knocks at her door and found the 7-year-old victim standing at her door in pajamas soaking wet.”
According to authorities, after the injured and traumatized girl survived being choked, falling from the bridge and swimming to shore, the 7-year-old victim headed straight to “the nearest house that had lights on.” The occupant(s) of the home immediately notified police after finding the young girl standing alone at the door, soaking wet and wearing nothing but pajamas.
When police arrived on scene, they found the 7-year-old kidnapping victim to be suffering from injuries consistent with her version of events, including marks on her neck, bruises on her body, and “other injuries.” The unidentified child reportedly identified Joshua Hubert as the person who kidnapped, choked and threw her from the bridge.
Police arrested later Hubert at the Worcester police station, and the accused kidnapper made his first court appearance at his arraignment Monday in Worcester Central District Court. He has been charged with kidnapping is being held without bail; prosecutors expect that more charges will be filed against Joshua Hubert in connection with the crime.
“Fortunately, a greater tragedy was averted. The young victim had the strength to make it to shore and get help”
Joshua Hubert scheduled to make another court appearance on Thursday, where potential bail will be re-evaluated by way of a “dangerousness hearing.” It is possible that additional charges will be filed against the defendant at that time.
[Featured Image Yevhen Prozhyrko/Shutterstock]