A quick trip to a nearby store turned into a ride of horror for a Florida woman, when a strange man hopped inside her car and took her on a disturbing tour around town. Victimized in her own moving vehicle, things were about to go from bad to worse for the woman as she tried to get help on her highway to hell.
Anton Garner, 41, got into the unnamed woman’s car at some point between her home and the store she was going to. Details on how that happened weren’t immediately clear, perhaps her doors were unlocked as she was stopped at a light. Once inside, Garner stole his victim’s phone and cash, then forced her to drive him around town as he begged her to perform sexual acts on him. When she refused to do so, he mercilessly beat her as she was behind the wheel, heading down the road.
The assault only got worse when he became enraged that she stuck to main roads, rather than back roads, where he could have his way with her. The woman explained that he began smashing her face for a period of time before going even more ballistic, then suddenly got quiet. When the beating ceased and his advances were denied, the woman said the suspect began “mumbling to himself, got real fidgety and acted weird.”
But the distress of the disgusting scenario was far from over. Now on a dark road, away from any potential witnesses, the victim began to seriously fear for her life, especially as Garner was becoming ever more psychotic.
According to WFTV, she mustered up all courage she had left in her and escaped the car, leaving her captor inside. With no phone to call 911, she fled on foot to the nearest place she could call police for help. When she finally got to a phone, the dispatcher was less than willing to help her out and instructed the injured victim to do the unimaginable in this distressing instance.
The operator informed her that they couldn’t send DeLand police to her rescue to take a report, since she was calling from just outside their jurisdiction. She instructed her to walk down a dark road, alone, to an area within their boundaries, where they could then help her.
The woman was shocked at the dispatcher’s suggestion, after she explained to her that she had just been carjacked, assaulted, and nearly raped, and her attacker was still at large. After arguing with the emergency operator for nearly 15 minutes, police were finally sent to the woman where she was. Thankfully, they came just in time to nab the suspect, and he was booked into the Volusia County Jail, despite the dispatcher’s insistence of not sending the police to her.
The DeLand Sheriff’s Office was equally as stunned by the operator’s suggestion and said they are investigating the call. Deputies explained that dispatchers undergo months of intense training and that this particular employee had worked for the department for over a year without any issues. But apparently this individual is so by the book that even in an emergency, which all calls to 911 are, there is no room for quick and critical thinking.
The woman wasn’t just a victim to the bad guy, she was victimized by the dispatcher who wouldn’t deviate from training to get someone immediate assistance who is barely outside of the boundaries. When people’s safety is at stake, common sense needs to be used to address the urgent issue, not put the victim in harm’s way again. The police wanted to help and the operator stood in their way. If this person is not fired, next time it could cost someone their life.