Local News

Good Samaritan: 'We just stopped to help'

Posted May 13, 2010

— One of two brothers who foiled an apparent kidnapping Wednesday in downtown Chapel Hill said Thursday that he doesn't consider himself a hero.

Joey Shelton said he and his brother, Freddie, were running errands when they saw a man grab a woman who was jogging along Columbia Street. The man was dragging her to a car in the parking lot behind the RBC Bank at 101 E. Rosemary St.

Shelton said he initially thought it was a domestic situation, but the woman's terrified expression convinced him she didn't know the man.

Theodore Walker, Chapel Hill kidnapping case Man charged in kidnapping suspected in other cases

"It was just wrong the way he was handling her," he said. "He had already had her on the ground dragging her.”

Shelton backed his car up and blocked the man's exit from the parking lot, and he said the man then let the woman go and tried to drive off.

"He just floored it (and) hit me," he said. "I ended up on top of the car (and) busted the windshield. Next thing I know, I was in the street – rolling, rolling, rolling – and he kept going."

The brothers noted the license number of the car, and police traced it to Theodore James Walker, who was arrested about two hours after the kidnapping attempt.

Walker, 26, of 108 Timber Hollow Court in Chapel Hill, is charged with second-degree kidnapping, assault on a female and assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury. He was being held Thursday in the Orange County jail under a $5 million bond.

Investigators found a loaded shotgun and a baseball bat in Walker's car, Assistant Orange County District Attorney Morgan Whitney said Thursday.

Shelton said he's glad Walker didn't have the chance to use the weapons on the woman or him and his brother. His only injuries were scrapes on his left arm and shoulder from landing on the ground after rolling off the hood of the fleeing car.

"I just knew I wanted the officers to get the guy that was trying to mess with this woman. That’s it. Nothing more," he said. "There wasn’t any thought. It was wrong, and we just stopped to help the lady, plain and simple."

The woman, who a WRAL source said is a student at the University of North Carolina, escaped unharmed other than being doused with pepper spray during the incident. She called Shelton Thursday morning to thank him and his brother for their help.

She told Shelton that Thursday was her 19th birthday.

"It’s a blessing that she survived and she has plenty more birthdays to come,” he said. "She’s happy, she’s with her mom and she’s fine, and that’s all that matters.”


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • UNCfuturealumi May 14, 2010

    Let's give these guys a large reward..Words cannot express the gratitude that is deserving of them..Yep, their Mom is a proud lady..

  • mustainemad May 14, 2010

    Everyone in America needs to know about these two men, who demonstrated that they have what it really takes to help another in need; guys, you saved this girl from a horrible death!! You are TRUE heroes, deserving of a description that is thrown about a bit too easily these days in my opinion. Many blessings to you!

  • ConcernedNCC May 14, 2010

    The Shelton Brothers are great examples of heroes, for real. It gets so tiring to hear someone refer to an athlete as a hero when there are people like these guys.

  • zellaevans May 14, 2010

    Blessings to both the men who intervined. Yep, that is my definition of a hero.

  • wildcat May 14, 2010

    These guys were real heroes. This is not a racial story. Glad these guys was just there to help this lady.

  • Eleinne May 14, 2010

    Good Job heroes!!


  • Daisygirlforever May 14, 2010

    I am so sorry this story has not received more headline time. These two genglemen, bless their parents' hearts, were the epitomy of the ideal citizens that we pray surround us. They definitely deserve recognition, or this poor girl could have ended up like Eve Carson. Bravo, men of valor and class!!

  • newwake May 14, 2010

    There are still good people in thie world...

  • jkca May 14, 2010


  • itom68 May 14, 2010

    Oh, and these two guys that helped? Perfect example of folks who care about other people and act on it. Thanks fellas-