Teen Girl Escapes Kidnapper After Being Held For 6 Days, Authorities Say

A 17-year-old who was held captive at a residence near Big Bear Lake, California, escaped last week when the girl’s kidnapper took her to his workplace, authorities said.

Zackary Dourousseau, 26, was arrested March 7 after the teen freed herself from a locked vehicle, according to a Tuesday statement from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

Deputies learned that on March 1, Dourousseau had picked the teen up in his vehicle, driven her to his residence in Sugarloaf, and asked her for sex, the statement said. But the girl then refused, and was allegedly held inside the home for six days.

A photo shows the San Bernardino Mountains in Big Bear Lake, California.
A photo shows the San Bernardino Mountains in Big Bear Lake, California. Adrienne Helitzer via Associated Press

During this time, the teen was forced to drink large amounts of alcohol, while receiving only a small amount of food and water, authorities said. Dourousseau allegedly made the girl have sex with him while she was held captive.

Dourousseau then “forced the victim to drive to work with him where she was held inside of his locked vehicle,” according to the sheriff’s department. But the teen eventually escaped and ran to a nearby business, where workers called for help.

One employee at the store told local news station KTLA that the girl “looked like she hadn’t been taken care of for a few days.”

“A lady came in and just said that she was kidnapped,” the worker told the outlet. “And then 15 minutes later, a guy walked by past the windows and she said that it was him [her kidnapper]. So we took her into the backroom.”

According to the sheriff’s department, Dourousseau was located at his residence and taken into custody on charges of kidnapping, false imprisonment and statutory rape.

As of Thursday, the local district attorney had filed only one charge against Dourousseau — unlawful sex with a minor — pending further investigation.

A neighbor of Dourousseau’s told KTLA that he had seen a teen girl at his home recently.

“She looked to be 15 to 17, maybe,” the neighbor told the outlet. “Very young, and it was kind of suspicious. She was never dressed correctly. She always had men’s clothes on. Her hair was always greasy and scraggly.”

According to KTLA, authorities said that Dourousseau and the teen had known each other before the kidnapping.

Dourousseau was released on bond and is reportedly scheduled to appear in court Monday.