Teen wrestling champ foils kidnapper’s plan, saves little girl

April 29th, 2020

In the parking lot of a convenience store in border town Las Cruces, New Mexico, a mother’s worst nightmare came to life. A mom and her three young children had just climbed off a Greyhound bus and walked into the nearest shop, a drop-off point for buses passing through, in broad daylight.

She felt a man’s eyes on her, boring into her and checking out her daughters ages nine and two. Her one-year-old son was in a baby backpack strapped to her. They stood at the convenience store and waited for an Uber to arrive without an inkling that something terrible was about to happen.

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Flickr/Randy Heinitz Source: Flickr/Randy Heinitz

It didn’t long before the man, 22-year-old Daniel Beltran Arroyo, walked straight up to the mom, forcefully grabbed ahold of the two-year-old’s arm and demanded that the woman give him her children. She had no idea who this man was and why he was attacking them!

The mom’s protective instincts took hold and she kicked the man. But he quickly retaliated and punched her in the head, causing her to fall backward and land on top of her one-year-son who was strapped onto her back in a child carrier.

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Flickr/Mark Ittleman Source: Flickr/Mark Ittleman

A few witnesses watching the horror unfold before their very eyes attempted to intervene, but the attacker punched a man and tried to hit another woman who was attempting to assist the mom and her kids.

During the melee, the mom and her children were able to seek refuge inside the store. However, the attacker was determined to get his hands on her children and followed them indoors.

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Dona Ana County Source: Dona Ana County

Another man inside attempted to hold the doors tightly shut so the attacker couldn’t follow them inside, but it didn’t matter. The attacker threw the doors open with enough force that the other man was knocked down to the ground. Then he punched that man in the face.

According to court documents, the attacker punched two other women in the store while dashing around shouting “Give me the kids!”

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Flickr/bfick Source: Flickr/bfick
Across the street, 16-year-old Mayfield High School junior Canaan Bower was filling his truck with gasoline and heard screaming. He glanced up and saw quite the commotion across the street.

Canaan noticed a frantic mother and her children in dire trouble. He just knew he had to help!

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Flickr/Pete Considine Source: Flickr/Pete Considine

He hopped into his truck and raced across the street. Without hesitation, Canaan rushed into the store and used an awesome wrestling move on the attacker — he body-slammed him and got him in a chokehold.

“She kept screaming and I could tell after looking that she was trying to avoid this guy, trying to get away. He was going through people like crazy. I grabbed him from behind and I pulled him back into the open area of the store, [flipped] him onto his back and held him there. That’s how I pin everyone else in a real match or tournament. That’s just what I did to him.”

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Facebook/Troy Bower Source: Facebook/Troy Bower

In the meantime, the mom and her children were ushered into an employees-only room where workers hoped she could stay safe until the police arrived. Canaan’s dad Troy Bower couldn’t have been prouder of his son.

“Punches were being thrown and (he could hear) screams of terror, so he jumped in his truck and went across the street. By the time he got there, they had gone inside and so he got out of his truck and went inside — and there was a whole bunch of blood all over the floor. I wanted to wring his neck. You fear for your own child’s safety in that situation. You don’t know if this guy’s maybe got a gun or a knife — you don’t know what this guy’s capable of. I’m sure other people saw what was going on and didn’t get involved. It’s very terrifying that your child put himself at risk but, at the same time, confident that he would do the right thing and succeed in doing it.”

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Facebook/Troy Bower Source: Facebook/Troy Bower

This district champion high school wrestler realized the attacker was out of control, but he managed to keep him pinned with sheer strength and wrestling technique. Finally, the police arrived.

“I had no idea that this was going to be the outcome … I just knew something had to be done and no one was going to do anything about it, so I did.”

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Facebook/Troy Bower Source: Facebook/Troy Bower

Aimee Bronson, 41, a store clerk who was working during the time of the assault at the store, also was punched several times. She said the attacker was laughing hysterically and punching everyone within reach.

“He was beating on everybody — he seemed superhuman. All he wanted was those kids. It wasn’t for that young man, it would have been a lot different because we couldn’t stop him. It was so scary.”

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Facebook/Flo Wrestling Source: Facebook/Flo Wrestling

The Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office credited Canaan with saving the day. The incident occurred mere weeks after Bower cinched the District 3-5A championship in the heavyweight division (285 pounds) and later competed at the state tournament.

“Had it not been for Bower’s quick response, the outcome may have been very different. It was very heroic. Not many adults would have done what he did.”

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Flickr/Jobs for Felons Source: Flickr/Jobs for Felons

Police arrested the attacker for suspicion of attempted kidnapping, child abuse and several counts of battery and assault.

Watch the video below as Canaan swoops in and saves the day. It’s incredible!

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Canaan Bower, a heavyweight wrestler from New Mexico, literally pinned this kidnapper at a gas station until the cops came (Video: Las Cruces Sun-News)

Posted by FloWrestling on Saturday, March 28, 2020

Source: Inspire More, News 4 San Antonio, Las Cruces Sun News, Oxygen