Cops: Kidnapped Woman Saved by Text
Authorities say she got access to assailant's phone, sent message to sister
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 10, 2015 4:36 PM CDT
Lee Meadows, suspected of rape.   (Slidell Police Department)

(Newser) – A woman who had been kidnapped, raped, and brutally beaten managed to save herself when her abductor left the hotel room where she was being held and neglected to bring his phone, say police. The victim then sent a message to her sister, reports the Leaf Chronicle in Clarksville, Tennessee. The problem was that the woman had been abducted in Tennessee and knew only that she was somewhere near New Orleans. Police were able to trace the message, however, and soon busted down the hotel room's door in Slidell, about 500 miles from where the kidnapping took place, reports WYMT. They arrested Lee Meadows, 34, and brought the woman to the hospital with multiple injuries, including broken bones.

"Throughout the ordeal, Mr. Meadows took all of the victim's belongings, including her cell phone, so she couldn't contact anyone," says a Slidell police sergeant. "After arriving in Slidell, Mr. Meadows checked into a local hotel then continuously beat, strangled, and raped the victim." The Slidell chief praised the "determination of the victim to survive." Meadows had just been released from prison on domestic abuse charges.