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UPDATE: Woman's Quick Thinking Saved Her Life, Police Say

By: Stephen McLamb, Bureau Chief
By: Stephen McLamb, Bureau Chief

Madisonville, Monroe County (WVLT) - A former auxiliary police officer is in jail after kidnapping and threatening to kill his ex-girlfriend and her son.

But the suspect may have gotten away, and the whole incident taken a turn for the worst, if not for some quick thinking by the victim.

Not only was it quick thinking, it was very smart thinking.

Officers say Rachelle Freeman did two things Wednesday night while being held at gunpoint that possibly saved her life. One, she threw the suspects gun out of the car when he wasn't looking.

And two, she also called 911 and left the line open so dispatchers could use satellite tracking to locate the vehicle.

24-year-old Dexter McCowan is currently being held in the Monroe County Jail on $66,00 bond on two counts of aggravated kidnapping and reckless endangerment, as well as felony fleeing and evading arrest.

Madisonville police say they received a 911 call of a woman being assaulted at the Murphy USA gas mart in Madisonville just before 8 pm.

Police say McCowan pulled freeman into the car with her three year old son and began more than an hour long and nearly 70 mile chase into two counties.

The chase finally ended near the Food City in Loudon.

"He successfully spike stripped the suspects vehicle and subsequently was able to get all four tires so the suspects vehicle was only able to travel a short distance through the city of Loudon after that."

Police say McCowan resigned as an auxiliary officer following a domestic dispute back in February.

Freeman declined an on camera interview, but did say she broke things off with McCowan back in February.

Police say thanks to the help of all agencies they were able to get McCown safely off the street.


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