Americans Who Survived Mexico Kidnapping Detail Their Captivity
Over a month after four Americans were assaulted and kidnapped by a Mexican drug cartel, two survivors are revealing details of their captivity as they recover from the trauma of the ordeal and the death of their two friends.
“They didn’t deserve that. None of us deserved it. But we’re alive – we have a lot of recovering to do,” LaTavia Washington McGee told CNN’s Anderson Cooper during an exclusive interview Tuesday.
Survivors Of Mexican Kidnapping Reveal Horrifying Details Of Time In Captivity
On March 3, Washington McGee, Eric Williams, Shaeed Woodard, and Zindell Brown were kidnapped while traveling to a medical appointment in Matamoros, Mexico. Both Woodard and Brown were killed, while McGee and Williams survived.
The group was driving across the U.S.-Mexico border when they heard a car horn beeping behind them. Brown looked back. Then saw the occupants had guns and told the others not to stop the vehicle, Washington McGee recalled.
That’s when the shooting started, according to Williams.
“Zindell and Shaeed, they jumped up to run and they were gunned down,” Williams said.
Williams was shot in both legs after jumping out of the driver’s side door as someone started beating on the car window with a gun.
Meanwhile, Washington McGee was forced by gunpoint into the bed of a pickup truck, disturbing CCTV footage shows, and the others were carried onto it.
Investigators believe the group was mistaken for Haitian drug smugglers; a U.S. official previously told CNN.
RELATED: Mexico Kidnapping Survivor’s Mother Reveals What LaTavia McGee Said About Murders: ‘She Watched Them Die’
Deceased Were Both Still Alive When Their Limp Bodies Were Tossed Into The Back Of Pickup Truck
Williams and Washington McGee told CNN that Brown and Woodward were still alive when their limp bodies were dragged and tossed onto the truck bed.
The outlet reports that the group was then driven to another location where they were interrogated.
“That’s where Shaeed said, ‘I love y’all, and I’m gone.’ And he died right there,” Williams said.
Washington McGee recalled he told Woodard he was sorry as the latter lay dying in the back of the truck.
LaTavia Washington McGee and Eric Williams survived the kidnapping, while Shaeed Woodard and Zindell Brown were killed.
— Holly Quinn (@HollyQuinn30248) March 12, 2023
“He said he loved us and he was gone. It was the last thing he said,” Williams said through tears.
McGee and Williams say they were moved to several different locations over the next few days as they remained in captivity, whole being blindfolded between switching spots.
The group was eventually taken to a house where people wearing red plastic “Diablo” masks “pointed guns to our head, telling us not to look up,” Williams said.
Later, Williams was taken to a clinic where they stitched him up and put his leg on a piece of wood, adding that no one even checked to see if a bullet was still inside.
“No pain medicine or nothing. They just stitched it up,” Williams said.
Survivor Recalls Being Placed In Room With Dying Friend: “It’s Okay, I’m Your Brother” He Said
McGee says she was placed in a room with Brown as he lay dying and mortally wounded.
Video purportedly shows the kidnapping of 4 American citizens in Mexico near the Texas border.pic.twitter.com/XTqInsP5te
— Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) March 6, 2023
Six People Arrested In Mexico So Far In Connection To The Fatal Kidnappings, Officials Say
McGee and Williams were finally rescued on March 7 after being dropped off at a wooden shack. The two survivors and the bodies of their friends were eventually brought back to the U.S.
An apology letter was later released and found by the Gulf cartel.
At least six people have been arrested in Mexico so far, according to CNN.