Cleveland police bodycam shows moments after man escapes alleged kidnapping while avoiding gunshots

Published: Apr. 19, 2023 at 10:29 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The Cleveland Police Department released bodycam footage from March 9, showing the moments after a 52-year-old man escaped an alleged kidnapping while being shot at by two suspects.

Police interviewed the man outside a store near East 46th Street and Central Avenue.

“They had guns on me and they robbed me. They tied me up, they had plastic on the ground like they were going to kill me,” he told an officer.

Police say an unnamed caller dialed 911 and told dispatchers that a victim of a possible kidnapping ran into Paul’s Serv-Rite Food Market located at 4621 Central Ave around 12:30 p.m on March 9.

The bodycam footage clearly shows the man talking to police with heavy duty zip ties attached to his wrist and what appeared to be duct tape hanging from his neck.

“They put this on my face, they got me in my van and turned the location off on my phone. One of the guys was in the back with me,” he told the officer.

The victim told police that he accepted a repair job at a home on Notre Dame Avenue for a man he knew from serving time in the Federal Penitentiary, police said.

When they went downstairs, the abduction began.

According to police, the victim and a separate 911 caller, the suspects made the victim call one of his business associates, to tell him to bring $15,000 to a gas station at Woodland Avenue and East 55th Street or they would hurt him.

The victim told police while the suspects were driving he was able to break the zip ties on his wrist.

As the vehicle began to slow down, the victim opened the door and jumped out to run away, police say.

As the victim ran down East 49th Street, one of the suspects jumped out of the van and began firing the gun at him multiple times without striking the victim, police say.

The victim ran into Paul’s Serv-Rite Food Market and asked for help as the suspects drove off with the victim’s van, police say.

Officers went back to the scene and recovered shell casings.

Nobody was injured.

On March 26, police arrested Ahmed R. Johnson, who’s facing kidnapping, assault and robbery charges. He’s due in court on April 21.