Local News

Girl tells judge she wanted to go with accused kidnappers

Posted June 12, 2013

— A District Court judge ruled Wednesday that there was probable cause to have a grand jury handle the cases of two men accused of kidnapping several youths.

Durham County deputies pulled over an SUV with Michigan plates on U.S. Highway 70 on May 30 and found five teens and two men inside, and authorities said the group was trying to pick up a Durham teen at the time.

Hang Wu, 22, and Ryan Tyler Wurzel, 20, of Dover, Del., are charged with one count each of kidnapping, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, possession of a stolen vehicle and possession of a stolen firearm.

The judge said following a Wednesday hearing that he didn't find probable cause to charge the men with two other kidnapping offenses.

A 14-year-old Durham girl testified during the hearing that she wanted to go with the men, whom she met through a social networking site, to California.

"They did not encourage me. It was my choice," the girl said. "I thought of them like a new family, a new start (with) people I could trust."

Durham kidnapping case Durham grand jury to get teen kidnapping case

Authorities initially said they suspected Wu and Wurzel of being involved in a sex-trafficking ring, but those allegations didn't come up in the court hearing.

The girl told prosecutors that sex was never mentioned when she discussed going away with the men.

Wu, a native of China, is also being held on an immigration detainer because of an expired student visa.


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