Southern California -- this just in

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Man says he was kidnapped, stuffed in his own car trunk

December 29, 2012 |  8:48 pm

An injured man flagged down an officer Saturday in the San Jacinto Mountains and gave a harrowing account of being kidnapped and beaten.

The man, whose name has not been released, said he was buying gas at the intersection of Florida and New Chicago avenues in East Hemet about 5:30 a.m., when three or four men approached him.

He told authorities the men beat him and forced him into the trunk of his own car and then drove off, eventually coming to a stop on California 74.

The man, who authorities said is in his 40s, said he escaped from the trunk of the car, then hid from his abductors in heavy brush.

About 8:40 AM, a Riverside County sheriff's community service officer was traveling eastbound on  74 when he saw the man. The officer summoned help, and the victim was treated at a local hospital.

Authorities said they recovered what they believe is the vehicle -- a white, 1997 four-door Suzuki Esteem.

Anyone with information is asked to call investigators at (951) 537-6402 or Riverside County Sheriff's Dispatch at (951) 776-1099.


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-- Howard Blume