BALTIMORE (WUSA) -- Authorities are crediting a grandmother and her in-car navigation assistant for helping to stop her grandson from kidnapping her and three other grandchildren in Baltimore County and fleeing to New York on Saturday.
Maryland State police say that 22-year-old Darius T. Johnson had stolen her Buick Lacrosse and was attempting to abduct the 68-year-old woman and three of her grandchildren. According to authorities, Ardella Eaddy had agreed to take Johnson to the Nottingham area to pick up some of his belongings from a home but when they came back out to her car, Johnson reportedly told her he was taking the car to New York. Police say Eaddy was able to get in the passenger's seat and attempted to remove the keys from the ignition. Johnson then allegedly assaulted her, insisting he was going to New York.
Eaddy refused to leave the car because her other three grandchildren, Johnson's cousins, were in the back seat. Johnson then drove north on Interstate 95 from I-695 in White Marsh. During that time, Eaddy used the vehicle's On-Star to call for help. Eaddy says On-Star shut off the engine, allowing the car to coast to a stop near Abingdon. Johnson then fled on foot.
Troopers issued a lookout for Johnson who was spotted along Route 24 near Route 7. He was arrested and later charged with kidnapping, kidnapping of a child under 16, false imprisonment, carjacking, second degree assault, unauthorized use of motor vehicle, and theft over $10,000. He is being held at the county detention center on $500,000 secured bond.
The grandmother and her grandchildren, who are between the ages of 4 and 12, were found in her Buick Lacrosse on the side of I-95. None of them required medical treatment, say police.