LAKE CITY, S.C. (WBTW) — Attorneys released a statement Tuesday on behalf of two Lake City natives who survived a kidnapping in Mexico earlier this month.
The statement, released by civil rights attorneys Harry Daniels and Jason Keith, thanked everyone for their concern and support. Eric Williams and Latavia Washington McGee were among four Lake City natives who were kidnapped while traveling to Mexico.
“Over the past few weeks, Eric and Latavia have been through a nightmare the likes of which most of us can hardly believe,” the statement reads. “Now as they continue to recover from their physical and psychological injuries, we wanted to take a moment to thank everyone for the unbelievable outpouring of concern and support.”
“Every thought and prayer has been felt and they have mattered more than you could imagine,” the statement continues. “As we move forward, we ask for your continued support as we pursue every avenue seeking justice for Eric and Latavia and to hold those responsible for the deaths of Shaeed Woodard and Zindell Brown accountable.”
Reports have said the group got caught up in the shootout as they traveled to Mexico for one a member of the group to have cosmetic surgery. The survivors were held captive for days in a remote region of the Gulf coast before they were rescued from a wood shack, officials said Tuesday.
The kidnapping occurred in Matamoros, Mexico, which is just across the border from Brownsville.
Records show the gun that was used in the kidnappings came from the United States.
Roberto Lugardo Moreno made an initial appearance Monday at a federal court in Brownsville and was appointed a public defender, who did not immediately respond to a voicemail seeking comment. His detention hearing is scheduled for Thursday.
The serial number of a firearm he purchased in October 2019 matched that of a gun recovered by authorities that was linked to the March 3 kidnappings, according to the complaint. Moreno said he didn’t apply for a license to export the firearm from the U.S. to Mexico, and knew it would be illegally exported, the complaint said.
Eric Williams has had five surgeries since being rescued and returned to Brownsville, Texas, his wife told News13 on Wednesday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
📲 Download the News13 app to stay updated on the go.
📧 Sign up for WBTW email alerts to have breaking news sent to your inbox.
💻 Find today’s top stories on WBTW.com for the Grand Strand and Pee Dee.