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The Villages
Friday, June 21, 2024

Standoff in The Villages ends after kidnapping suspect surrenders

After nearly 24 hours of negotiations, a 54-year-old man accused of attacking and kidnapping a woman from a home in The Villages has “peacefully” surrendered to law enforcement authorities.

James Savage (1)
James Savage

James Savage, 54, was arrested by members of the Marion County Sheriff’s Office SWAT unit at around 10:30 a.m. this morning after an extended standoff at a home on Belhaven Loop in the Village of Chatham.

According to the sheriff’s office, Savage surrendered himself “peacefully” after prolonged talks with the MCSO Negotiations unit and members of the SWAT team.

The SWAT team moved in on the home in which James Savage had reportedly barricaded himself
The SWAT team began negotiations with James Savage after he barricaded himself in a home in The Villages on Friday, March 15.

The arrest comes just under 36 hours after an alleged altercation involving Savage and a woman with whom he’s been romantically involved for the past four years.

In video released by the Wildwood Police Department, Savage is allegedly seen on Thursday night punching and pulling a victim by her hair before forcefully slamming her into the ground and pushing her into a Mercedes. 

Murviel Dunn was kidnapped by James Savage in The Villages

On Friday morning, police released video footage of the incident, saying the victim had not yet been seen and the case was an active kidnapping.

After hours of searching, at around 1 p.m. on Friday, the woman was found safe.

At the same time, police reported that Savage had barricaded himself in a home on Belhaven Loop, which is in the Marion County portion of The Villages.

According to court records, Savage had been arrested in 2023 after harassing a woman who lives on Belhaven Loop. It is not clear if the woman he harassed last year is the same one he allegedly kidnapped on Friday. 

Savage was booked into the Marion County Jail at 12:08 p.m. on Saturday. He faces multiple charges from both the kidnapping incident and the standoff, including domestic battery and kidnapping.

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