Kidnapping scare sparks pursuit across parish lines

Kendrick Smith

BATON ROUGE – What began as a possible kidnapping led to a pursuit by deputies in one parish before ending in a crash in another parish.

Around 5 a.m. on September 19, the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office received a call regarding a possible kidnapping of a woman. WBRSO reported that the call involved a woman “being held against her will and subjected to abuse by a male.”

WBRSO then initiated a pursuit of the SUV driven by the man, identified as a Nissan Rogue. West Baton Rouge officials said when they found the SUV, the suspect allegedly attempted to “ram a WBRSO unit.” The suspect refused to stop for the deputies, according to WBRSO.

The suspect proceeded to drive over the Mississippi River Bridge eastbound into East Baton Rouge Parish, where Baton Rouge Police officers were requested to assist.

BRPD was informed that West Baton Rouge deputies were pursuing a possible kidnapping victim, and the suspect was heading toward Baton Rouge.

The suspect exited onto Essen Ln. before navigating surface streets and ultimately ending up on Plaza Americana Drive.

After leading deputies on a pursuit, the suspect crashed the SUV in front of the Sleep Inn Hotel on Plaza Americana Drive. Investigators say the woman he allegedly kidnapped was in the vehicle.

The driver has been identified as Kendrick Smith, 37, of Baton Rouge. Smith has since been arrested and was taken to a hospital for evaluation. Meanwhile, the female victim is safe and receiving medical attention, as reported by WBRSO.

BRPD will initially charge him as a fugitive for WBRSO and may add any additional charges they deem necessary.

Smith will then be transported to WBRSO to face additional charges of second-degree kidnapping, aggravated assault with a motor vehicle, aggravated flight, resisting an officer and possession of schedule II narcotics.

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