Victim Takes Kidnapper's Gun, Escapes

OLDSMAR, Fla. (AP) - Authorities say a Tampa-area kidnapping victim escaped capture by grabbing the gun of a suspect distracted by text messaging.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office is investigating the deadly Sunday night incident. Detectives say three suspects forced the male victim into their car at gunpoint.

They hoped the victim would lead them to another man, with whom they were in a dispute over stolen coins.

Authorities say the suspect sitting in the back with the victim laid his handgun on his lap while sending a text message. The victim grabbed the gun, fatally shot the suspect next to him and injured the one in the passenger seat.

He ordered the driver to stop the car and called 911 after he escaped.

Charges are pending against the two surviving suspects.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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