Woman Details Being Trapped Inside Wrecked Car for Eight Days


"What did she say?" the officer asked. "Was there any kind of fight? Did she say anything that might make you think she was leaving you?"

"No," Tom said, his heart sinking. "All she asked was, 'What are you doing?' I said, 'sleeping' and she hung up. It was quite normal for her to just check in to hear my voice."

"So she just hung up?" the officer asked.

"We've been married for a long time," Tom said, "and she's been mad at me at least half of it. We fight. We're married." "So, you're sure she didn't just leave you? Like she'd had enough, kind of thing?"

Tom knew that Tanya wouldn't leave him—at least not before giving him a reason. But where was she? He couldn't imagine where she was or what she was doing, and all these questions about her leaving got to him. "But, if she'd left," he reasoned, "she would have taken some—if not all—of the money! She didn't take anything except her Nordstrom Visa." "So when was the last time you know where she was?"

Tom told him that the last he could track was that she'd left her job at Fred Meyer in Bellevue at nine in the morning. "If she was using her card since then," he added, "I can't check that and that's why I need to get a case started so you can check."

"Which card? Her Nordstrom card?" the officer asked.

"Yes," Tom said. "That's the only card she has with her and, like I said, I'm not on it so they won't tell me anything." "Wait here," the office said. "I'll check a few things out and be right back."

Tom waited, talking with Tanya's boss, who thought it was not in Tanya's nature to do this. "I've only known her a short time," he said. "But she seems to be very dependable."

Tom asked the manager if they'd noticed anyone who stood out, who seemed strange, but the manager said that they keep a close eye out for that kind of thing and saw no signs of it.

"Thanks," Tom said. "Please, if you hear from her, please call me."

The officer came back into the room, looking at his notes. "We've found video footage of Tanya getting into her car at the end of her shift and driving out toward the highway," he said. "My sergeant has informed me that our involvement has to end. You have to contact King County Police to follow up since our jurisdiction ended when she left work. Since we have evidence that she left our jurisdiction of her own volition, we have to hand you off to King County."

"So, you're telling me I have to call 911 again once I get back into Maple Valley?" Tom asked, incredulous. He felt helpless and frustrated. "Can I ask why I have to wait?"

"Because with cell phones, 911 calls connect you to the office based on the tower your call goes through, and not based on your phone number," the officer explained. "This way, you get the right department to assist you." Tom headed for the door—and for Maple Valley.

Finally, again, my eyes close and I drift off into peaceful unconsciousness. But, soon, my phone rings. It snaps me back to my agony of excruciating pain. Where is my phone? Tom! Are you calling me, Tom? I want to answer but I can't reach the phone. I feel a wave of dizziness and I panic. I flail with my hand to grab the steering wheel. Finally, the dizziness calms.

When he got home, he called 911 again, connecting this time with the King County Police Dispatch and Communications Center.

"My wife is missing," he said. "And the Bellevue police said I need to file a missing person report with you."

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