A West Virginia man is behind bars after police said he “tortured” a woman with a “butane torch” while keeping her trapped at her home.
Defendant Sammy Joe Martz, 47, was arrested for kidnapping, said the Philippi Police Department on Wednesday in a Facebook post.
Officers said they got a 911 call on Tuesday in the Anglin Run Subdivision from a woman who said she was “next door hiding under the porch.” She told authorities that Martz struck her in the face, and her eye was swollen shut. Units eventually reached her under the back porch of a neighboring home, authorities said.
“[She] stated that during this time, Sammy ‘Tortured’ her by striking her all over her body, sitting on her and burning her with a butane torch,” authorities wrote in a criminal complaint. “Sgt. Miller did observe her right eye to be swollen with slight bruising at the time of contact and did take photos,” they wrote.
She said she fled the home out a rear window, documents stated.
“She further advised that [Martz] had threatened to kill her and had burnt her with a torch on her stomach and her leg,” authorities said.
The victim told authorities Martz was still inside the home and there was a gun inside, according to documents.
“The units entered the residence and announced Police as entering, to which the Defendant came out from a back bedroom,” the complaint stated.
Law enforcement claimed to find money and drugs — described in the complaint only as a “clear crystal substance.”
“There was also a substantial amount of Methamphetamine discovered in the residence,” officers wrote on Facebook. “More charges are pending as [the] investigation continues.”
As for a gun, they claimed to find an unloaded rifle hanging from the living room wall. Martz allegedly said ammunition was under the love seat but authorities said they found none when they lifted it and checked under the cushions.
“Sammy stated that he did harm [the woman] by striking her and burning her with a torch on at least 3 occasions,” the documents stated.
Speaking to an investigator at Broaddus Hospital, the woman said she tried to leave early in the morning but Martz would not let her, authorities wrote. He allegedly held her against her will for four to five hours.
Martz is held without bond at the Tygart Valley Regional Jail and Correctional Facility, records show.
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