Reporting Vickie Thomas
HAMTRAMCK (WWJ) – The mother of one of the women who were abducted in Hamtramck thinks they were forced into a trunk at gunpoint by a man who did not want them to testify against him.
Investigators say 18-year old Abreeya Brown and 21-year-old Ashley Conaway were thrown into the trunk of a silver sedan around 10 p.m. Tuesday on Andrus Street, near Jos Campau and St. Aubin, following an exchange of gunfire.
Police have arrested three men in connection with the abduction — 25-year-old Brandon Cain, 24-year-old Bryant Lee and 34-year-old Andre Todd-Douglas — and a car fitting the description was found burned out in Detroit. But there has yet to be any sign of the women.
WWJ’s Vickie Thomas talked with Lois Brown, the mother of Abreeya Brown, who said she’s worried and just wants to know what is going on.
“Are they still alive, are they hungry, are they thirsty, have they been beat, have they been raped,” said Lois Brown. “I’m so worried, I’m just like in a daze.”
Detectives believe the abduction is tied to a shooting that took place on February 7. Lois Brown said the trouble began before that, when Cain shot at both women after a “breakup,” and a bullet grazed Conaway’s head.
“They weren’t really a couple in the first place … he wanted it to go further than she wanted it to go and he just couldn’t accept that so that’s when he shot her in the back of her head two weeks ago,” said Lois Brown.
Abreeya Brown’s cousin, who did not want to be named, denied that Conaway had a relationship with one of the suspects.
“Abreeya told me this out of her mouth after the shooting, that they never even had sexual intercourse or anything, Ashley and Cain. He’s just delusional,” she said.
The family believes the women were kidnapped in an attempt to silence them as witnesses.
“And that’s why she was to testify about him shooting her, so that’s when he called to say he’s coming to get her to stop her from testifying,” said Lois Brown.
Cain allegedly offered the women money not to testify and when they refused to take it, that’s when Lois Brown says he pointed a gun at their heads and forced them to get into the trunk.
Police Detective George Voight said Cain was arrested in Detroit, Lee was arrested at his girlfriend’s home in Pontiac and Todd-Douglas turned himself in to Hamtramck Police. So far, no charges have been announced.
“If they’re dead, tell them where the bodies are or if they’re alive, hurry up and let us get to them before it’s too late,” said Lois Brown.
Hamtramck, Detroit, Michigan State Police, the FBI and U.S. Marshals are all involved in the search.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Hamtramck Police at 313-876-7803 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.
Stay with WWJ Newsradio 950 and CBSDetroit.com for the latest.