Reporting Reg Chapman
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A St. Paul man faces serious charges after he tried to kidnap a woman in downtown Minneapolis Friday morning.
It happened near a popular downtown night spot shortly after 2 a.m. Police said 21-year-old Michael Rucker led them on a foot chase and ended up in custody after he attempted to kidnap an innocent bystander.
According to police, it was shortly after bar closing Friday morning when officers got a call that a man was walking near 5th Street and First avenues north with a gun tucked into his waist band.
Within minutes, police got to the area and saw a man who fit the description.
“He took off running from them, we chased him about two blocks and during that period of time officers did see him drop a gun in a parking lot,” said Sgt. Bill Palmer, public information officer for Minneapolis Police.
One officer recovered that gun as another chased Rucker through the parking lot and onto 6th Street. It was there, in between Hennepin and First Avenues, that a 19-year-old woman was waiting for a friend to come out of one the bars.
She was sitting behind the wheel when, “He jumped into a vehicle that was parked but occupied and then threatened the female who was in the driving seat that he would shoot her if she didn’t drive off with him,” Palmer said.
The woman did what she was told, but she didn’t get far. She drove just a few feet before police intervened.
“Officers stopped the car and arrested the suspect for kidnapping, possession of a handgun without a permit and fleeing officers on foot,” said Palmer.
Rucker was arrested and now sits behind bars at the Hennepin County Jail. Police said the female victim was shaken up but not harmed.
Police do have some advice for people who serve as the designated driver for friends who go downtown for fun.
“Locking your car doors if you are sitting there waiting for someone,” said Palmer.
Police believe this incident came to a peaceful resolution because of their beefed up presence in downtown Minneapolis at bar closing time. Uniformed and plain clothes officers work the core area around the bars, so if there is something going on they can get there fast.