Abducted Woman Who Called Her Husband And Police From Trunk Of Car Found Dead

Photo: NBC News

These are the crime stories making headlines today, September 8, 2016 …

  • A Montana woman was able to phone her husband and talk to police from the trunk of her car (above) after being kidnapped, but was dead by the time investigators found her, police say. Rita Maze, 47, was driving home when she was kidnapped at a rest stop on Interstate 15. Her body was found inside the car in the early hours of Wednesday morning in a parking lot near the Spokane, Washington International Airport. Maze, a school cook, called her husband Tuesday night from the trunk of the car, and was also able to communicate with a Helena police officer as the cell signal faded. The Spokane County Sheriff’s Office said it was able to track her movements through signals from local cell towers. A GoFundMe page has been set up to raise money for Maze’s family. [NBC News]
  • The man charged with fatally stabbing an NYPD cop’s aunt in Queens has been arrested after walking right by the investigators working the case, according to police. Two detectives were about to interview a potential witness when they saw Yonatan Galvez-Marin, 22, walk by with his “striking look,” according to NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce. Galvez-Marin is charged with the botched robbery and murder of Nazma Khanam, 60, in Jamaica Hills Saturday night. [New York Daily News]
  • The attorney for fugitive polygamist Lyle Jeffs, who has been missing for six weeks, suggests that he could have “experienced the miracle of rapture.” Attorney Kathryn Nester proposed the possible theory in court papers filed August 22. Jeffs faces federal fraud and conspiracy charges related to a multimillion-dollar food stamp scam in Utah, where he disappeared last month after coating his ankle with olive oil to slip off his monitor while under house arrest. The FBI has announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to his capture. [The Huffington Post]
Lyle Jeffs [Photo: FBI]

Lyle Jeffs [Photo: FBI]

  • A stockbroker accused of rape following a cocaine- and champagne-fueled office party has said he believed that his victim was crying due to the size of his penis. Daniel Green, 26, is accused of attacking the woman after she had curled up to sleep under a desk in the early hours following a night out. Giving evidence at his trial, Green told jurors that after meeting the woman for drinks, they went back to his offices to drink more and snort lines of cocaine. He claimed that he was having consensual sex with his victim when she began to cry and asked him to leave. He said that he thought: “Maybe my penis was hurting her. I always have difficulty when it comes to having sex with girls. I find my penis is hard to penetrate females.” The defendant claimed that his member measures 10 inches long and four inches around. Green has denied the woman’s version of the encounter, in which she claimed he dragged her back and raped her under the desk. The trial continues. [Daily Telegraph]
Rob Ryan [Photo: Wikimedia Commons]

Rob Ryan [Wikimedia Commons]

  • Criminals who were planning to rob Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Rob Ryan during his stint with the New Orleans Saints have been foiled by a voicemail. According to the New Orleans Advocate, Jockquaren “Jock” Van Norman and Larry “Alz” Quinn were considering robbing Ryan. But after dialing what he thought was the right number 11 times and receiving no response, he instead called the voicemail of an employee of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management and left a 2 minute, 16 second message. “He don’t got no security,” one of the now-arrested individuals said. “He’s just a regular football coach. … He ain’t … big … like [rapper] Lil Wayne or nobody … that got bodyguards everywhere.” The federal employee turned the message over to the police, who were able to track the pair. Not surprisingly, authorities revealed that the duo had been involved in a number of high-profile robberies at Uptown bars and restaurants. Van Norman was indicted in November for a string of charges including armed robbery and attempted murder. Quinn is also behind bars on a similar spate of charges. [Vocatif]
  • One of the suspects who allegedly kidnapped and tortured a Tennessee man with a noose, a drill, and an iron was arrested and charged with attempted first-degree murder on Wednesday. Police say that Gage Caulk, 21, and others in his group kidnapped an unidentified man on August 29 and threatened to kill him if he didn’t say “where the dope is,” according to The Memphis Commercial Appeal. The group allegedly beat the man with a bat and tortured him for several hours before dumping him into a bathtub filled with bleach and putting a plastic bag over his head. They then released him on a country road, where he was picked up by a driver and taken to the hospital for treatment. [Fox News]
  • Jose Lantigua [Photo: Buncombe County, North Carolina Sheriff's Office]

    Jose Lantigua [Buncombe County, North Carolina Sheriff’s Office]

    A Florida businessman accused of faking his own death to defraud insurance companies out of millions of dollars has pleaded guilty. Jose Lantigua, 63, faces up to 50 years in prison, but prosecutors have agreed to seek less time, according to the Florida Times-Union. Lantigua admitted to making up a story that he had mad-cow disease and had to travel to Venezuela for treatment — where he obtained a fake death certificate. He was arrested in North Carolina last year while reportedly applying for a passport under another name. [Fox News]
  • The Texas high school student who shot another female student in the buttocks before turning the gun on herself has died, authorities say. The incident occurred this morning at around 9:25 A.M. at Alpine High School in western Texas, near the Mexican border. Authorities say that the injured student has been taken to a nearby hospital and is being treated, and a spokesperson for the school district described the situation as “contained.” Sheriff Ronny Dodson with the Brewster County Sheriff’s Office said they recovered a semi-automatic pistol next to the female shooter’s body, and also found ammunition. Dodson also said the shooter had only lived in Alpine for the past six months, and her grandparents say she was a straight-A student. [CNN]

Main photo: Rita Maze’s car [NBC News]