Muskogee, Oklahoma35.745 -95.361
FRISCO — Oklahoma authorities released on Tuesday the teary 911 call a missing teen made after she disappeared from a Frisco arena. It's the first time we hear how Bethany Stroud, 18, escaped her captor.
"He stopped on the side of the road, I don't know, a few hours ago," she says quietly to the dispatcher. "I think he was going to the bathroom, and I jumped into the seat and drove away."
Stroud made the call for help on Saturday night from a Braum's restaurant in Muskogee, Oklahoma, more than 200 miles from Frisco.
The Lone Star High School student appears to be sobbing as she explains: "I was abducted Friday night... I need an officer, please."
Stroud told investigators a gunman wearing a black hooded sweatshirt ambushed her in the parking lot as she left work at 9:30 p.m. Friday at the Dr Pepper Arena in Frisco. Police admit they have no leads on the suspect's identity.
In the recording, the teen tells the dispatcher she's fine but did not know who took her.
She later told investigators she fled her captor around sunset, but admitted not calling for help until close to 10 p.m.
"I’m at the Braum's... I really don’t know where I am," she’s heard saying on the 911 call.
Investigators attributed the gap in the timeline to her trauma, or perhaps a fuzzy memory of the timing. She wasn't able to tell detectives how long she had been gone, how many miles they drove, or where exactly the gunman took her.
Stroud said the suspect briefly took her to a house before forcing her to drive for hundreds of miles.
On Monday, Frisco police broke their two-day silence and, in a statement, called the kidnapping "an isolated case." Officers also revealed a vague description of a suspect.
The alleged crime is extremely rare for this affluent suburb north of Dallas. Forbes Magazine recently named Frisco the 14th safest city in America.
And questions about the circumstances continue to swirl. Police won't clarify how they know it was an isolated event.
Also, Stroud was last seen wearing a maroon polo shirt. Yet, in the 911 call she tells dispatchers she was wearing a gray long-sleeve T-shirt and a pink jacket. Frisco police say it's possible she was able to change clothes in the 24 hours that she was missing.
"It's kind of unreal, because we always thought Frisco is a safe community," said Stroud's 16-year-old friend Amanda Guzman, who helped organize a search for the missing classmate over the weekend.
Since returning to Frisco Sunday morning, Stroud has been resting at home with her family, her father said.
"We’re relieved she's back," Alan Stroud told News 8 on Sunday, adding his daughter had a bruised cheek but was otherwise fine.
He has declined to speak to reporters since then, and refuses to discuss the circumstances of his daughter’s disappearance.
"I'm not really going to get into that," he said on Sunday. "It's a private issue for us."
Stroud wrote on her Facebook page over the weekend:
"I'm home and I'm safe. Thank you all so much for your love and support and efforts. right now, I need to be alone with my family, I’m sure you will all understand."
Twenty minutes after leaving work in Frisco on Friday night, Stroud dialed 911. But the 12-second call was filled with static. The teen later told investigators the suspect removed her cell phone battery.
"If this is as horrific as it sounds, she’s very fortunate to get away," said Muskokee police Cpl. Pedro Zardeneta.
Zardeneta said the case is now in the hands of Frisco police, and any search for a suspect is their call. The FBI said it has also joined the effort.
DISPATCHER: Muskogee 911 center. Police, fire, and ambulance.
STROUD: Umm... yes. I'm at the Braum's — I really don't know where I am. I know I'm at a Braum's.
STROUD: ...and I know I need an officer, please.
DISPATCHER: Okay. Ma'am, can you tell what's wrong?
STROUD: I was abducted Friday night.
STROUD: ...and I need an officer, please.
DISPATCHER: Okay. Are you okay there, right now?
STROUD: Yeah, I'm fine.
DISPATCHER: Okay, what's your name?
STROUD: Bethany Stroud.
STROUD: Stroud. S-T-R-O-U-D. And I'm from Frisco, Texas.
DISPATCHER: Okay. Frisco, you said? Texas?
STROUD: Frisco, Texas. Yeah.
DISPATCHER: Have you been left there? Or did you get away? Or...
STROUD: No. He was... he stopped on the side of the road — I don't know, a few hours ago — and I think he was going to the bathroom and I jumped into the seat and drove away.
DISPATCHER: Okay, and you're inside a Braum's?
STROUD: I'm inside Braum's.
DISPATCHER: Okay, and you're on the one on 32nd Street. Um... okay, just a second. Are you on a pay phone, ma'am, there?
STROUD: No, I'm on one of those... I asked an employee if I could use the phone, and they gave me one.
DISPATCHER: Okay. What are you wearing?
STROUD: I'm wearing dress pants and a long-sleeve gray T-shirt.
DISPATCHER: You have a gray T-shirt?
STROUD: And a pink North Face jacket.
DISPATCHER: Okay. A pink North Face... okay. Hang on just a moment, ma'am, I'm trying to get all of your information in. Do you know who... who took you? Who you were with? Or was it a stranger?
STROUD: No, I have no idea.
DISPATCHER: How long... how many days has this been going on?
STROUD: I was... it was Friday night after I had gotten off work.
DISPATCHER: How old are you?
STROUD: I'm 18.
DISPATCHER: Okay. And you're inside a Braum's, is that correct?
DISPATCHER: Okay. Ma'am, we're going to send someone out there to you. It will be just a few minutes, okay?
STROUD: Okay thank you.
DISPATCHER: Okay, thank you. Bye-bye.