Monterey County kidnapping suspect arrested in Watsonville

WATSONVILLE, Calif. (KTVU and wires) -- A 26-year-old man sought for allegedly kidnapping a woman in Monterey County on Monday was arrested Wednesday at a motel in Watsonville, sheriff's officials said.

Hugo Oviedo Sanchez was arrested around 3 p.m. Wednesday at the Economy Inn at 584 Auto Center Drive in Watsonville, according to the sheriff's office.

The case began around 11:45 p.m. Monday when a deputy came across a vehicle idling in a parking lot in a rural area of Monterey County and saw a man in the driver's seat and a woman passenger, sheriff's officials said.

The deputy tried to contact the driver but he drove off and a high-speed pursuit ensued. The pursuit was called off for safety reasons after the fleeing vehicle reached speeds of more than 120 mph, according to the sheriff's office.

Deputies later found the vehicle with the woman still inside but the driver, later identified as Sanchez, at large.

Investigators determined Sanchez kidnapped the woman and had been driving around in her vehicle for nearly two hours. He repeatedly hit her in the face and arms during the incident, sheriff's officials said.

Deputies said Sanchez had a restraining order preventing him from contacting the victim and also had a suspended driver's license.

Investigators then received information on Wednesday that Sanchez was at the Economy Inn. Watsonville police and California Highway Patrol officers joined sheriff's deputies in surrounding the motel after learning he was hiding in one of the rooms there.

Sanchez allegedly tried to escape by forcing a hole in the ceiling of the room and climbing through the attic crawl space, but was eventually arrested and booked into Monterey County Jail, sheriff's officials said.