Police: Knife-wielding driver held passenger hostage before crashing on Route 28

A 22-year-old Monroe man driving on Route 28 through the Delaware County towns of Bovina and Delhi held his passenger hostage with a knife before she grabbed the wheel and crashed the car on the morning of Thursday, Oct. 16, according to Delaware County Undersheriff Craig DuMond.

Left: James D. Garcia. Photo via the Delaware County Sheriff's Office. 

James D. Garcia and his girlfriend got into a domestic dispute in his car while driving south through Delhi, DuMond saidi. Garcia threatened the woman with a knife as they drove.

The women secretly called 911 on her cell phone, had a short conversation with the dispatcher, and then Garcia threw the phone on the floor of the car in an attempt to end the call. The phone stayed on as the couple drove on, the altercation escalating as they did so. 

Garcia crashed the car twice in the town of Bovina a few minutes later. First, he hit a guardrail and then continued driving, DuMond said. Then, the woman in the car grabbed the steering wheel and yanked it hard to the right, driving the car off the road, where it came to a halt. 

A member of the Delhi Police Department arrived on the scene moments later, followed by deputies from the Delaware County Sheriff's Office. Garcia's passenger sustained minor injuries in the accident, DuMond said. No other cars were involved in either crash. 

Garcia was arrested and charged with felony unlawful imprisonment, as well as with menacing, criminal mischief, and leaving the scene of an accident, according to a Delaware County Sheriff's Office press release. He was arraigned in the Town of Delhi Court and remanded to the Delaware County Correctional Facility on $1000 cash bail. A restraining order was also filed against him, presumably by his passenger.