Cheryl Treadway, a mother of three from Florida, used pizza delivery mobile application to send a discreet message for help. Ethan Nickerson allegedly held his girlfriend and her three children hostages.
One Monday afternoon Candy Hamilton, a manager at one of Tampa’s Pizza Hut, received an unusual order. She received help message as a special requirement to an order. Actually they were two messages: “Please help. Get 911 to me” and “911 hostage help”. Candy shared that this had never happened before during her 28 years of experience.
The quick-thinking mother convinced Ethan to let her order a pizza for the children. Cheryl used Pizza Hut app to order pizza and as “Special Requests” wrote that she needed help and asked 911 to be called.
Candy Hamilton immediately called 911, who sent officers at the house. Lieutenant Curtis Ludden was the first responder. As soon as he got there he managed to take Cheryl and one of her kids out of the house and started negotiating with Nickerson. The criminal, who was armed with a knife, at first said he will not come out, because they will arrest him and he didn’t want to go to jail. 20 minutes later the officers convinced him to come out and surrender. After that they took out the two other kids who were unharmed.
Nickerson was arrested and charged with a number of crimes including aggravated assault with a weapon and obstruction of justice.
Curtis Ludden was surprised of Cheryls’ way to get help and admitted if he was her, maybe he would have never thought of that way.