Solvang kidnapping victim reaches out for help at Starbucks in Arizona

Kidnapping victim Virginia Paris and alleged kidnapping suspect Joseph Hetzel were seen at a Starbucks located in the 1300 block of N. Litchfield Road in Goodyear, Arizona around 7:15 a.m. Sunday, according to a report from Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department officials.

The potential kidnapping occurred in the afternoon of Friday, Sept. 1 in Solvang when 55-year-old Paris of Lompoc was taken by her ex-boyfriend, 52-year-old Hetzel also of Lompoc,  Sheriff’s officials said.

Virginia Paris
Photo contributed

When Paris ordered her coffee drink, she gave the name Virginia. She then went to the bathroom and when she came out, she told a female customer in the coffee shop that she needed help. Hetzel saw this interaction, grabbed her and dragged her out of the shop. He then kicked her into a vehicle and drove off at a high rate of speed. As the vehicle drove off, Paris threw her car registration out of the door and it was recovered by Goodyear Police Officers. The vehicle being used is still Paris’ black 2015 Chrysler 200 with a CA License number of 7NGE514. The vehicle was last seen entering the I-10 Freeway eastbound towards Phoenix.

Paris is a caucasian female, 55-years-old, approximately 5’6″ tall around 150 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a light colored shirt. Paris has recently sought a restraining order against Hetzel which was granted, but hadn’t been served, officials said.

Joseph Hetzel
Photo contributed

Hetzel is described as a caucasian male, 52-years-old, approximately 6’2″ tall and 195 pounds with brown hair and hazel eyes. He was last seen wearing a light blue colored shirt. Hetzel has previously served time in prison for possession of items used to make explosive devices, using explosive devices with intent to terrorize, felony vandalism and criminal threats. He is believed to have access to firearms and should be considered armed and dangerous, officials reported. Members of the public are encouraged not to approach him or contact him.

Those that know him in the Santa Ynez Valley said they hope the woman is returned to her family safely and that Hetzel is a very aggressive person.

“Those that know him have seen his double personality and how he turns on his ‘friends’. People quickly disassociate themselves from him, as he is not a nice person and hurts women,” said Jay Bardessono of Solvang.

The Sheriff’s Office is working closely with the Goodyear Police Department and other Arizona authorities to locate and find Paris and Hetzel. Additionally, the Sheriff’s Office is working with the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). A description of the vehicle and the photos of both Paris and Hetzel have been sent to Arizona law enforcement and to the local media.

The Sheriff’s Office is deeply concerned for Paris’ safety and has a large amount of resources dedicated to this case. Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Virginia Paris or Joseph Hetzel should call 911. To leave an anonymous tip, please call the Sheriff’s Anonymous Tip-Line at 805-681-4171 or go to http://www.sbsheriff.org/anonymoustips.html. If you see Hetzel, do not approach him but call 911 immediately.