According to authorities, a man was arrested in New Jersey after his girlfriend escaped and sought help at a gas station.
The woman had reportedly been held captive by James W. Parrillo Jr. for almost a year after they met at a gas station in New Mexico and began dating.
Parrillo provided her a ride to Arizona, and the two began dating, but he reportedly attacked her about a month into the relationship, she claimed.
By then, the coupled had traveled to California, and the victim felt trapped in the relationship, authorities said. During their time together, Parrillo allegedly took away the woman’s phone and debit cards, and “isolated her from her family,” according to the AG.
According to camera evidence obtained by ABC, James W. Parrillo Jr., 57, was arrested on Feb. 7 after the woman managed to retreat to the gas station, where she shut the door. She begged an attendant for assistance, which resulted in Parrillo’s arrest shortly after.
Authorities claimed the couple arrived in New Jersey in December and had been staying in Bass River Township, about 30 minutes north of Atlantic City, for about two weeks before the lady managed to flee after an incident in which Parrillo allegedly battered and choked her.
Parrillo has been charged with kidnapping in the first degree, strangulation in the second degree, aggravated assault, and criminal restraint in the third degree.
Based on social media and evidence provided by the lady, authorities believe he engaged in “similar predatory activity” in other states.
“This is a deeply disturbing case in which the defendant allegedly held a woman against her will for nearly a year, while traveling with her throughout the country,” Attorney General Matt Platkin said. “We are reaching out to law enforcement across jurisdictions to identify other people who may have additional information on the defendant.”