Solvang kidnap victim scuffles with abductor in Arizona

A Lompoc man who is suspected of abducting his ex-girlfriend on Friday in Solvang was spotted dragging the victim into a car in Arizona, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.

On Friday afternoon, Joseph Hetzel, 52, allegedly kidnapped his ex-girlfriend, Virginia Paris, 55. Hetzel is a convicted felon with a criminal history that includes using explosive devices with the intent to terrorize, felony vandalism and criminal threats.

Early Sunday morning, Paris ordered a drink at a Starbucks in Goodyear, Arizona, and gave the name Virginia. Paris then went to the bathroom and when she came out, she told a customer in the coffee shop that she needed help.

Hetzel saw this interaction, grabbed Paris and dragged her out of the shop, according to a press release. Hetzel then kicked Paris into a vehicle and drove off at a high rate of speed.

As the vehicle drove off, Paris threw her car registration out of the window and it was recovered by Goodyear Police Officers. Hetzel was driving Paris’ black 2015 Chrysler 200 with a California license number of 7NGE514.  The vehicle was last seen entering the I-10 Freeway eastbound towards Phoenix.

The court recently granted Paris a restraining order against Hetzel, but it had yet to be served. He is approximately 6 feet 2 inches tall, 195 pounds, with brown hair and hazel eyes.

Deputies describe Paris as 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighing 150 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.

Officials are asking anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of either Paris or Hetzel to immediately contact 911, do not approach or contact them. Hetzel has access to firearms and should be considered armed and dangerous.