One of the UK’s most notorious kidnappers apologised to his victim when he returned her home
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One of the most notorious kidnappers in the UK actually apologised to his victim when he returned her home.
Michael Sams held Stephanie Slater captive for eight days after he abducted her at knifepoint from her Birmingham-based workplace, an estate agents, in 1992.
Her kidnapper conducted a disgusting plan by imitating a potential home buyer, where she was handcuffed, gagged and blindfolded before being placed in a coffin-like box which was locked inside a wheelie bin in his workshop in Newark-upon-Trent, Nottinghamshire.
Sams, who hailed from Sutton-on-Trent, was later found guilty of murdering another victim, 18-year-old Julie Dart from Leeds, after kidnapping her in a similar way.
But amazingly, Slater didn’t face the same fate after a police cordon was eluded to collect a £175,000 ransom from her employers.
Instead, Sams released Slater and took her home, having dropped her off two streets away from the front door of her family home.
She recalled in an interview following the ordeal: "He pulled up the car, he said 'I'm sorry about everything; you were the innocent victim'.
"Then he said, 'Don't look back at the car'. I fell out onto the pavement and the door shut behind me and he drove off at speed. When I opened my eyes, I was partially blind.
"The pressure of the blindfold for eight days and nights had damaged my eyes. All I could see were the swirling orange street lamps. And I could hardly walk,” she revealed of the horrific situation.
She managed to make it back to her family’s home and was reunited with her parents.
She admitted: "A guy opened the door and I didn't recognise him. I thought I had come to the wrong house. It turned out he was my mum and dad's family liaison officer.
"He had been there for eight days but had never seen a photograph of me, so he didn't recognise me. Over his shoulder, my dad appeared and screamed, 'It's Stephanie. Stephanie's back' and he hauled me into the porch."
After witnessing her father’s reaction, the officer then tragically had to separate her from her parents in order to prevent contamination of the forensic evidence.
In a later interview, Slater recalled: "He pushed me to the back of the room, sat me in a chair and said 'You stay there. Don't touch the arms of the chair. You sit there and don't do anything'.
"I was absolutely terrified. I was thinking 'Dear God, what is going on?'
"The reality of it is, you are back from a terrible ordeal and you see your mum or dad and you want to hold them or hug them.
"To a police officer, you are a walking crime scene - I had fibres and things all stuck to me and whatever else,” she said.
"But I should never have been denied just a hold of a hand to know that I was home."