1990 victim recalls James Worley abduction :"Get in the truck or I'm going to kill you"
WAUSEON, OHIO (WNWO)-- On July 4th 1990 Robin Gardner was abducted by James Worley. On Monday she took the witness stand in the Fulton County courtroom telling jurors what happened.
"He says get in the truck or I'm going to kill you," side Gardner recalling what happened.
The 54-year-old-then 26-year-old said she was riding her bike in Whitehouse Ohio when she saw a truck pass by. She didn't think anything of it until that same vehicle knocked her off her bike and into a ditch. Worley is accused of murdering and abducting 20-year-old University of Toledo student Sierah Joughin in July 2016. Presiding Judge Jeffery Robinson told jurors before she spoke that her testimony was not a reflection of Worley's character.
Gardner, the last witness of the state testified that Worley held a screwdriver to her throat and threatened to kill her. There was also a screwdriver found at Sierah's suspected abduction site near county road 6.
Though more than 20 year difference, there are several similarities between what happened to Gardner and Joughin. They also both suffered head injuries.
Both women in their twentieswere riding bikes near cornfields when abducted. There's also the handcuffs.
Joughin's body was recovered handcuffed. Worley tried to handcuff Gardner, but she got was able to get out of his truck.
"The door closed on the passenger side and I slid across the seat and the driver side door was still open and I ran into the street," said Gardner to jurors.
Shen then flagging down a passing motorcycle. she saw him drive by as she struggled in the passenger seat.
"I ran up to him and said please help me, this guy is going to kill me," said Gardner.
Worley was convicted and did more than two years in prison for her abduction. Before his 1990 arrest, he questioned Gardner's account of the incident.
"He said don't listen to her, she's crazy," said Gardner recalling Worley's comment to the man on the motorcycle who saved her life.
In court, Defense attorney Merle Dech noted that his client never tried to hide after the crime was committed.
"He did not flee scene between the encounter and when law enforcement arrived is that correct?" said Merle to Gardner in his cross examination.
It's unknown what would have happened if Gardner hadn't got away. However, as the state of Ohio's last witness of the murder trial. It's certain her words were powerful.
"I really thought I would die," Gardner testified.
Gardner is the last witness for the State. When Court resumes Friday, the Defense begins presenting its case. The jury is expected to start deliberations on Monday.