On Tuesday March 19th around 9:00 p.m., troopers responded to the 22000 block of Slaughter Neck Road, Lincoln where they contacted a relative of Margaret E. Smith, who was reporting her missing. Information was received that she had not been seen or heard from since around 11:00 a.m. when a neighbor saw her getting into her car and leaving the residence. Relatives grew concerned due to her not contacting anyone and the fact that she had medical conditions that required medication. A Gold Alert was issued that same evening with the victim’s vehicle description along with information containing her physical depiction.
At 8:20 a.m. Wednesday March 20th, troopers were dispatched to the area of a cemetery located on Calvary Road off King Road east of Seaford for a report of an elderly woman wandering around the graves. Ms. Smith was contacted and appeared to be confused and suffering from exposure. Her automobile was nowhere around. She was immediately transported by the trooper to Nanticoke Memorial Hospital where she was treated and released.
Later that evening, Ms. Smith responded with relatives to Troop 4 in Georgetown where she was interviewed by detectives about the incident. As she was giving her account of the event, troopers in Bridgeville were conducting a traffic stop on the victim’s car on Chaplains Chapel Road, where five juveniles were all taken into custody without incident.
It was determined through interviews that on Monday March 18th the victim was at the Chicken Man Convenience Store in Milford when she reported being approached by two females. The girls, ages 14 and 15, asked for a ride to the Lincoln area and the victim agreed. When they arrived at a residence, the two girls allegedly demanded the victim’s keys and a struggle ensued between the victim and the girls when Ms. Smith refused to hand them over. According to police, once in possession of the keys, the girls then ordered Ms. Smith out of the car and forced her into the trunk of the car before driving off with her inside, and at one point during the kidnapping, the two girls demanded money from the victim before removing more than $500.00 from her coat pocket. After nearly two days of being trapped in the truck, the girls then dropped her off at the cemetery where she was located on Wednesday morning by a visitor on the grounds.
All five juveniles were transported back to Troop 4 where they were processed on the above charges. The two female juveniles were placed in the custody of Stevenson House Detention Center on $122,000.00 cash only bond. Two of the male suspects were incarcerated at Stevenson House on $27,000.00 secured bond and one male suspect is being held on $2,000.00 secured bond.
Source: Delaware State Police