Wanted a a woman who was allegedly seen bleeding from the face and screaming for help in a white tractor-trailer A man has been found safe in New Jersey after a 26-hour manhunt, police announced Thursday night.
The search was launched on Wednesday afternoon after a witness reported a woman bleeding and a man driving a truck around 2 p.m. pulled her back into the cab on Route 130 heading toward the Ridge Road exit, South Brunswick Township police said.
Officials have released footage of the incident, appealing for tips on how to find the truck.
The woman and man who experienced the incident were tracked down on Thursday at 17:10. announced by the policeand said that the case was not as dire as it first appeared.
The couple was identified as a married couple in their 50s, Deputy Chief Jim Ryan told NBC News.
The woman appeared to be bleeding when she hit her head in the car and tried to climb out of the window in a panic, while her husband rushed in a truck to get help, Ryan said.
Authorities said they received tips from around the country, but the case was closed by Gabrielli Truck Sales, a truck dealership located on Route 130 near the scene, police said.
The company recovered the video, which allowed detectives to identify the truck and the woman inside.
Officers searched Middlesex and Union counties for the white truck, and detectives spotted a man who matched the witness’s description leaving the truck and approached him.
At the same location, detectives also found the woman filmed.
Both agreed to go to police headquarters and talk to detectives.
Police then learned that the man “came to rest” in the car and his wife “fell forward and hit her head,” Ryan said.
“He pulled over to the side of the road when he saw her hit her head. She saw the blood coming out and immediately panicked because she thought it was really bad so she screamed for help and wanted to apply pressure. When he stopped the truck and looked around and saw him bleeding, he knew he had to get up to get help,” Ryan said.
“He never saw a witness and didn’t realize there was anyone who saw the collision,” Ryan added.
His wife’s bleeding eventually stopped, he said, and the couple went to a local rites-of-passage service to get her a bandage.
Ryan said when detectives found the couple, they saw visible injuries on the woman and a bandage on the side of her head.
Ryan said they also found video from the truck to back up the couple’s story. He called finding the pair like “finding a needle in a haystack.” Tips came in from Texas, California and Washington, and police received assistance from the FBI.
“Often our stories are sad and tragic and this one has a positive outcome because so many people got involved so quickly and we found answers,” Ryan said.
Chief Raymond Hayducka praised finding the couple as “a great team effort, from the community providing tips to the detectives tracking down the leads.”
“It was 26 hours, but we were able to find the woman and make sure she was safe,” Hayducka said.