Arrest made in Bertie kidnapping

Published 8:37 pm Monday, October 13, 2008

POWELLSVILLE – Freedom lasted just four days.

Tony Kennedy Watford, 44, of Rock Pile Road in Colerain was released from prison Thursday after serving time for second degree kidnapping and other related charges.

Early Sunday morning, Watford allegedly returned to the home of the same woman he was convicted of kidnapping in 2006. At that home, on the Sally Freeman Road in Powellsville, Watford allegedly abducted the woman again, according to the Bertie County Sheriff’s Office.

After allegedly being held hostage for more than six hours in a wooded area, the woman was able to escape, according to Detective Sergeant Ed Pittman.

“Watford grabbed her by the hair and dragged her into the woods,” Det. Pittman said. “He kept her there until daybreak when she managed to get away.”

Det. Pittman said Watford later came out of the woods and was taken into custody.

He has been placed in the Bertie-Martin Regional Jail under a $1 million cash bond. Watford is charged with one count of first degree kidnapping, one count of second degree kidnapping, one count of first degree burglary, one count of assault on a female, communicating threats and assault with a deadly weapon.

Watford is scheduled to make his first appearance in Bertie County District Court Wednesday morning. He could also face additional charges in the incident.

According to the North Carolina Department of Corrections, Watford was sentenced to a term of four years and five months on a charge of second degree kidnapping. That sentence was handed down on February 16, 2006.