Chia Vang (27), admits he kidnapped, threatened wife
Created on Wednesday, 08 August 2012 16:50
By Emily Gurnon
A Brooklyn Park man has admitted he kidnapped his wife and then drove recklessly around the Twin Cities while threatening to kill her and their family.
Chia Vang, 27, pleaded guilty Monday, July 30, in Ramsey County District Court to kidnapping and making terroristic threats during the events of May 16.
He is scheduled to receive a sentence of about seven to nine years Sept. 19, though the defense will ask for three years and eight months.
A charge of possession of methamphetamine and a second terroristic threats charge will be dismissed at sentencing if the plea deal goes through.
During the incident, the 29-year-old wife got the attention of a passing motorist by pressing her face against the car window and mouthing, "Help me!" The other driver wrote down most of the license plate number and called 911.
Before May 16, the woman had fled the family home and stayed in women's shelters because Vang strangled and head-butted her May 10, according to the criminal complaint in the case.
In response to questions by Ramsey County prosecutor Maggie Samec, Vang, who is culturally married to the woman in the Hmong tradition, admitted that he tried to track down her whereabouts. He spotted her in a car her nephew was driving; she noticed he was following her in her own car, the complaint said. She asked her nephew to bring her and her two oldest children, who were also in the car, to the Dragon Star Market on Minnehaha Avenue in St. Paul. She hid in the market and called 911, she told police. Vang admitted Monday that he came to the market in her car, with their youngest, a 2-year-old boy. He then left on foot with the child; his wife waited with her nephew for a locksmith so that she could get into her car.
But Vang returned. He said he opened the door of the nephew's car, pulled her from the vehicle and forced her into her car.
He then drove very fast, though he said he doesn't remember taking evasive maneuvers or seeing his wife try to get the attention of a passing driver.
Samec asked whether he had threatened her by saying he was going to kill them by crashing the car.
"I told her how I feel, I don't tell her I was going to do it," he said. He admitted he made the statements to scare her. He also removed the battery from her cellphone and then threw it out the window, he admitted.
Emily Gurnon can be reached at 651-228-5522. Follow her at twitter.com/emilygurnon.