Kidnapping Victim From North Carolina Rescued By FBI In Atlanta

Apr 10, 2014

A man who was kidnapped from his home in Wake Forest, North Carolina last week and taken to Atlanta, was rescued around midnight on Wednesday by FBI agents. 

Frank Janssen was kidnapped on April 5 and rescued by FBI agents in Atlanta at 11:55 p.m. on April 9.
Credit Courtesy of the Wake Forest Police Department

The FBI says they believe he was held hostage for five days in hopes that his daughter would help an inmate that she prosecuted.

The events that took place last week read like they came from a movie script. 

According to the FBI complaints, a heavyset white woman knocks on the door of a home near Raleigh. Sixty-three-year-old Frank Janssen answers. As soon as he opens the door, several people jump on him and subdue him with a taser gun.

They then place him in the trunk of a car and drive him to an apartment in Atlanta.

Meanwhile, the kidnappers contact his family and send his wife text messages, including a photo message of Frank Janssen tied up in a chair. The kidnappers say that if she contacts the police they will cut him up and send him back to her in six boxes. 

The kidnappers demanded help for an inmate who his daughter, an assistant district attorney in Wake County, prosecuted a case against two years ago. The inmate, 49-year-old Kelvin Melton, is serving a life sentence in prison. In 2012, he was convicted on charges of being a violent habitual felon and assault with a deadly weapon with an intent to kill.

John Strong, a special agent in charge of the FBI Charlotte Division, spoke at press conference in Raleigh.

"He spent five nights in the hands of a group of very dangerous people," Strong says. "We can only imagine the uncertainty, confusion and fear he experienced."

The two women and three men, ranging in age from 20 to 30, are charged with federal kidnapping charges.