Kidnapped Woman Throws Stick Shift in Neutral, Jumps from Moving Car to Escape

"I'm going to be driving a manual for the rest of my life," she said.

By now, we’ve all heard the stories of how driving a car with a manual transmission is one of the better anti-carjacking measures out there. But now there’s a new twist on the tale, courtesy of an incredibly brave 20-year-old woman who thwarted her kidnappers by throwing her 2009 Scion into neutral and bailing as they drove through a crowded intersection.

According to The State, Jordan Dinsmore was returning home from her job at Buffalo Wild Wings early Wednesday morning and had just parked outside her Columbia, South Carolina apartment when three men emerged from a nearby grove of trees and threatened her with a gun. They took her phone and purse and attempted to drive away with her in the back seat, but they were stymied by the car’s manual transmission.

One of the kidnappers grew frustrated and ran off, but the remaining two ordered her to drive them to an ATM. Dinsmore withdrew $300 from the drive-thru machine and begged to be released, but the men told her to drive to a relative’s house where she would be raped by his friend.

That’s when she took action. She unbuckled her seat belt to reach the ATM through the Scion’s window and left it off, “hoping” her abductors wouldn’t hear the alarm. As she drove, she considered crashing the car intentionally, but didn’t want to risk being incapacitated around them. Instead, as she entered an intersection and saw three oncoming cars, she opted to open the door and jump out at 35 mph.

The State reports the car rolled into some bushes, only suffering minor damage, and the kidnappers fled on foot since they weren’t able to drive it. A young woman stopped to help Dinsmore, who received cuts and bruises on her legs but is otherwise remarkably uninjured after pulling off a stunt that would even give stunt doubles some pause.

The Richland County Sheriff’s Office is reportedly investigating, though they haven’t made any arrests yet. Dinsmore is definitely shaken from the traumatic experience, but she seems resolved in one key aspect.

“I’m going to be driving a manual for the rest of my life,” she told The State.