By Ralph Iannotti

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STOWE TOWNSHIP (KDKA) – Police described it as an extremely violent kidnapping-assault case. It took place in an apartment in the Pleasant Ridge Road neighborhood, in Stowe Township one night last June.

It all began when investigators said a man abducted a 40-year-old woman while she was walking home.

The suspect’s name is Edward Ponton.

He’s 32-years-old, and he’s been on the run for the last six months.

“Ponton and a female accomplice tied her up, beat her and burnt her with incense sticks,” Allegheny County Police Det. Michael Kuma said. “She had numerous injuries. I had met with her in the hospital. Her face was swollen; it was a very violent crime that occurred.”

The victim managed to escape her captors. She was found by Stowe Township Police wrapped in only a blanket not far from where the crime took place

Authorities say Ponton did not act alone in this violent kidnapping-sexual assault. His female partner was taken into custody the day of the abduction.

Marnell Watts, 37, of McKees Rocks, is in the Allegheny County Jail on $100,000 bail, charged with, among other things, kidnapping and assault.

Up until now, efforts to track Ponton have been unsuccessful.

“We have made contact with family members. They claim not to know where he’s at. Any help would be appreciated in locating him,” Det. Kuma said

The Pittsburgh Crime Stoppers number is 412-255-8477.

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