DUDLEY (CBS) – A couple from Dudley has been charged with kidnapping a woman, robbing her and forcing her to drive around looking for money. Jessie Thibodeau, 44, and 31-year-old Nichole Murphy will be arraigned on several charges Wednesday in Dudley District Court.
Police said Thibodeau and Murphy went up to a car in the parking lot of the Dollar General Store on West Main Street around 8 p.m. Tuesday, told the driver they were homeless and asked her if she could let them in so they smoke inside of her car to get out of the cold. The woman let them in.
That’s when, investigators said, Thibodeau claimed he had a gun and put it to the back of the woman’s head.
“The victim stated that the two wanted cash and made her drive them around Webster, Massachusetts for approximately one hour,” police said in a statement Wednesday. “She stated that the individuals advised her to contact anyone that she could get money from.”
The woman was told to drop them off at The Wash Tub Laundromat on Oxford Avenue in Dudley. They allegedly left with her license, cell phone, and $20 stolen from her.
Police were called in and officers found fresh footprints in the snow that led to a home on Green Street.
“….found some fresh footprints in the snow. Led them right to their house. … They were able to observe some fresh snow on the porch, and were able to carry on from there,” said Dudley Police Sergeant Dean Poplawski.
Police got a search warrant, went into the home around 1 a.m., found the stolen items and arrested Thibodeau and Murphy, who lived at the home together.
Tina Cheever, Thibodeau’s girlfriend, said that the action was very out of character for him. “He was very depressed … wasn’t working at the time … out of a job,” said Cheever, who was in the house at the time of the arrest.
Officers also found a man who had a similar encounter with the couple shortly before the woman let them into her car. He drove off as Thibodeau tried to get into the car, police said.
Thibodeau and Murphy spent the night in jail. They’re charged with armed robbery, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping and larceny.