The woman had just closed the store and was walking to her car when the man pushed her into her vehicle and attempted to unbutton her pants.
MIRAMAR BEACH — An Arkansas man was arrested after attempting to kidnap and sexually assault a cigar store employee who had waited on him earlier in the evening.
According to a press release from the Walton County Sheriff's Office, early in the morning on March 23 an employee of the Cigar Factory and Social Club in Miramar Beach closed the business and walked to her car to leave. She told investigators that a man she had waited on earlier in her shift, later identified as 30-year-old Jonathan Harvey Watson of Jacksonville, Arkansas, rushed toward her and pushed her into her vehicle.
The victim said she held on to the steering wheel in an attempt to fight off the suspect.
During the struggle, the victim said Watson was holding her against her will while trying to unbutton her pants and pull his down. The victim continued to fight him, striking him several times.
The suspect then fled the scene after hearing what he thought was another vehicle in the parking lot.
The woman was able to quickly take a photo of Watson's vehicle as he left the scene.
While she was waiting on him earlier in the night, Watson alluded to staying in a specific Destin neighborhood. Investigators located the vehicle matching the description and photo at a condominium complex on Holiday Isle.
Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called in to assist and Watson was taken into custody.
The man later admitted to investigators that he may have “(gone) too far” and should have stopped when the victim was screaming “stop.” He also said he had believed the woman was attracted to him, but realized she wasn't when she started to fight back.
He also admitted he had thought about grabbing her neck and turning her around against her will.
Watson is charged with burglary with battery, false imprisonment, and battery. He was released the following day on $50,000 bond.