Woman escapes captor after months of torture: Sheriff

Editor’s Note: Some of the details are disturbing

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Florida (WJW) – Law enforcement in Florida is detailing a horrific case of captivity and abuse.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office said deputies responded to a gas station Monday after a caller reported an injured woman had just escaped from a van.

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According to a press release, the victim had been held captive since January.

Deputies arrested Walter Medina, 48.

According to a press release, Medina met the woman when she was panhandling.

“Medina actions turned violent as he subjected her to months of relentless physical abuse and captivity,” the press release states.

According to the sheriff’s office, Medina repeatedly assaulted the woman with a wooden baseball bat and a flathead screwdriver.

The woman was severely injured and suffered broken ribs, deep puncture wounds and extensive injuries to her face.

She was able to make her escape on Monday, the sheriff said, when Medina briefly left her alone at Walgreens.

“I can’t imagine the torture this victim endured for months, but I can imagine the relief she felt when our deputies arrived,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “I have to commend the bravery of the victim for escaping her captor and seeking help. Our thoughts are with her as she recovers from this traumatic ordeal.”

The woman was taken to the hospital for treatment.

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Medina faces charges including attempted 2nd degree murder, armed kidnapping and armed false imprisonment.

He was arrested following a pursuit with multiple law enforcement agencies on Tuesday and was booked in the Orange County Jail.

  • Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
    Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
  • Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
    Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
  • Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
    Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office

“This suspect’s reign of violent terror is now over,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister.

According to the sheriff’s office, Medina has previously served time in prison for a false imprisonment case and has an arrest history that includes kidnapping.

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