A North Texas man police believe abducted an underage girl was arrested after she told workers at a fast food restaurant that she was held against her will and sexually assaulted, police say.
The teenage girl was reunited with her family Tuesday after she ran into the Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Azle on Boyd Road and told an employee that she needed help and that she was being held captive.
"She was just shaking. She was a scared little girl," co-manager Shannon Cates said.
Cates and fellow manager Lynci Cedillo began to comfort the girl as they locked the doors of the restaurant and called police.
"I immediately jumped in, grabbed my phone and the cops were here in less than two minutes," Cedillo said.
U.S. & World
The girl told responding police officers that 24-year-old Diamond Marquis Williams left her in the car while he went into a pawn shop across the street. Azle police officers then quickly located and detained Williams.
"If he would have tried to come in he was messing with the two wrong mommas because these two mommas would have put him down," Cates said. "I would have held him until the cops got here."
After his arrest, Williams was first taken to John Peter Smith Hospital for treatment of a minor self-inflicted injury before being taken to police headquarters where he was interviewed by detectives and eventually charged with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated sexual assault of a child -- both first-degree felonies.
On Thursday, Williams spoke with NBC 5 from the Tarrant County Jail where he said he didn't kidnap anyone and that he and the girl were happily dating. He said they had been arguing, but that he never assaulted her. He added that he went to the pawn shop to sell jewelry so that he could buy her food.
The teenage girl, meanwhile, was taken to Cook Children's Hospital for a medical evaluation and treatment. She was reunited with family at the hospital, police said.
Wednesday evening, Williams' mother, Rebecca Kindred, spoke out defending her son, claiming police have it all wrong. She said she and her family had seen the girl with Williams for two weeks. She thought they were dating and says she told the family she was 18.
"They were always laughing and joking," Kindred said.
Kindred says she even went out to lunch with the girl, without her son.
"She didn't want to leave any time before because if she did, she had plenty of opportunity," said Kindred.
She doesn't doubt that something happened Tuesday to scare the girl but doesn't believe the kidnapping charge.
"If it was true what they said that she was held hostage, why would he get out of the car and leave her?" Kindred said.
But Azle police say that's not unusual.
"Either you physically hurt them or threaten them to the point that they are afraid now to try to escape from you," said Azle Police Chief Rick Pippins.
Police say the pair met on the social media app Snapchat and that she initially went with him willingly but that changed.
Investigators added that no missing persons report was filed because the man forced her to tell her parents that she was OK and with friends.
Police commended the KFC restaurant employees for providing a safe space for the victim and for providing an accurate description of the suspect.
Williams is currently being held in the Tarrant County Jail; a bond amount has not been set and an attorney of record is not listed. He has an extensive criminal history, including serving time for aggravated assault for hitting a woman with a rock.
But his mother said that shouldn't affect this case.
"I want the truth to come out," Kindred said. "I don't want them to persecute him because of his background. It's not fair."
NBC5's Alice Barr contributed to this report.