Notes left on scraps of paper in public restrooms helped Pennsylvania authorities track down and rescue a woman held captive for months.
In the first note discovered last Thursday in a Walmart in Carnegie, Pennsylvania, police said the woman wrote she was being sexually and physically assaulted by a man, according to a criminal complaint. The woman said she was being held against her will, urged any readers to call 911, included an address and warned that the man had a knife.
“If I don’t make it, tell my family I love them,” the woman wrote in one of her notes.
Nobody answered the door when police investigated the address listed on the note, the court document said. Authorities also attempted to contact the woman by phone but were told by the man that she was on vacation in New York.
On Saturday, another note was found in the women’s bathroom at the Fallingwater museum in Mill Run, about 65 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, the complaint said.
“The note states that she has been held since May 1, 2021 at Spreading Oak Drive and that they were not on vacation,” according to the complaint. “It states that she heard the police knocking at the residence, that the abuse hasn’t stopped, and please don’t give up.”
The second note prompted authorities to return to the home on Sunday with a SWAT team.
Authorities saved the woman and arrested the man she described in the notes. Corey Brewer, 38, of Pittsburgh, was charged with multiple crimes, including sexual assault, strangulation and unlawful restraint, according to court records.
The woman told police she had been held against her will since May 1 and that Brewer threatened to kill her and her family if she left, according to the criminal complaint. The two were previously in a relationship, and the victim used to have a protection-from-abuse order against Brewer. Authorities have not released the woman’s name or any details about the condition in which she was found.
Efforts to reach Brewer were unsuccessful Thursday. It was unclear if he had an attorney.
A preliminary court hearing was set for July 22.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline by calling 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), visiting www.thehotline.org or texting LOVEIS to 22522.