Convicted stalker Felix Velazquez hoped the plan to kidnap his former girlfriend would have a happy ending — winning back her affections and bringing about a reconciliation.
So he devised "Operation Stitches," a crazy and meticulous scheme comprising 23 pages of maps, photos, personal details — and a scripted performance for abducting Dr. Teresa Duncan, who had him jailed for stalking her three years earlier.
But if anything went wrong, Velazquez said he was prepared to kill the beautiful young doctor, according to the undercover Broward sheriff's detective he thought was his accomplice.
Velazquez served 2 1/2 years in the county jail for aggravated stalking and violating a restraining order that banned him from going within 500 feet of Duncan in 2008.
But court records show that did not deter Velazquez, who claimed to be a CIA agent and former U.S. Army sergeant who trained in the jungle.
While he sat in jail, he hatched a plot to kidnap Duncan, a pediatrician at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospitalin Hollywood. Upon his release, he set to work on his computer and drew up a plan with an encyclopedic amount of detail about her routine, her appearance, friends and driving routes to work, according to evidence in the pending criminal case against him.
Velazquez asked a former cellmate to help abduct Duncan from the hospital parking garage, tie her up, drug her and hold her captive at a warehouse, detectives said. The same gang would pretend to kidnap Velazquez too, leave them alone together, demand a $9,000 ransom from Duncan and take them to a motel.
"Velazquez, acting like a victim, will then attempt to reconcile their relationship and convince her not to follow up with authorities," detectives wrote in their report.
Luckily for Duncan, the former cellmate thought the plan was alarming and was creeped out when Velazquez showed up unannounced at his home.
The former cellmate went to sheriff's detectives and they put together their own plan to foil his efforts.
When detectives told Duncan about Velazquez's plot, she said it was the latest terrifying episode in a long ordeal of harassment that spun out of a brief relationship.
"I was astonished, mortified, scared to death, and happy to have the police force there for me," Duncan told detectives after she had learned of Velazquez's kidnapping plan. She agreed to help them.
Velazquez is in jail and has pleaded not guilty to several charges including kidnapping conspiracy, aggravated stalking and violating probation. His recently hired attorney, Jose Izquierdo, said, "It's very early in the case. There's a lot to do and a lot to go through."
Through her attorney, Steven Osber, Duncan declined to comment because the attempted kidnapping case against Velazquez has not yet gone to trial.
Duncan, now 40, met Velazquez, who is 45, at a Pet Set fundraiser for the Humane Society of Broward County in December 2007. He worked in corporate financial planning and lived in Fort Lauderdale, then later in Greenacres.
They dated and broke up a few times but a judge ruled she ended the relationship on April 25, 2008, after Velazquez broke a glass and left a 4-inch hole in her bedroom wall during an argument at the Miramar house where she lived at the time.
Duncan was granted the restraining order soon after, but the harassment continued, she wrote.
"Based upon Mr Velazquez's recent behavior, combined with his previous incidents of dangerous and bizarre behavior, I feel unsafe," Duncan wrote in court documents in June 2008. "Mr. Velazquez continues to make my life a living hell and will continue to do so unless further action is taken."
Velazquez used spoofing software to text and make calls to her that looked like they came from her own phones, records show. The texts claimed he was in her home and sleeping in her bed while she was away.
Another time, he sat behind her house with an engagement ring, court records show. Letters, condoms and a broken cologne bottle were left on her doorstep.
Concerned for her safety, Duncan moved to a condo on the east side of the county in June 2008. But Velazquez was seen there and at her pool, according to police reports. During an oil change, mechanics found a GPS tracking device that had been secretly installed beneath her car.
On June 30, 2008, Velazquez was charged with aggravated stalking of Duncan at her new condo. He eventually pleaded guilty and was jailed from August 2008 to Feb. 2, 2011. During that jail stay, he told his cellmate that he might need help but didn't give much detail.
During the July 4 weekend last year, the former cellmate received a Facebook message from Velazquez, and the next day Velazquez laid out his plan to kidnap and extort money from Duncan.
The former cellmate reported it to detectives
on July 6.
Detectives began secretly recording Velazquez's meetings with the undercover "accomplices."
During those meetings, Velazquez went over the computer printout of his plan, revising the script and tweaking details.
On the list of items he said the kidnappers would need was duct tape to put over Duncan's mouth, chains, plastic zip ties to tie her ankles and her hands behind her back, handcuffs and two kinds of pills to drug her.
"MAKE SURE TO ORDER THEM TO TAKE THE CLOTHES OFF to make sure they don't dehydrate in warehouse or escape. (LEAVE UNDERWEAR ON)," Velazquez wrote.
The directions also included a graphic illustration depicting a woman who was tied up to show the kidnappers how it was done. Everything from the location of security cameras to the fact that Duncan "bruises easily" was covered.
Velazquez wore latex gloves when he handled his computer printout "so he would not drop any DNA," he told his accomplices.
He also told them he had done extensive surveillance of Duncan and security at the hospital.
"He wore uniforms similar to the grounds keeping crew or at times disguised himself as a construction worker wearing a hard hat and dust mask," detectives wrote.
He knew Duncan would suspect he was involved so he prepared the expletive-laden script for the abductors to convince her otherwise. The cover story was that people in jail knew he had dated a doctor and he now owed money to drug dealers who were kidnapping Duncan to get their money.
But he let some personal opinions slip.
"My people say that guy didn't belong in Jail. Christian man, good man. Is bulls--- to go jail for stalking without putting a hand on a b----," according to one extract from his script.
In the plan and on tape, Velazquez called Duncan "Stitches" because she was a doctor, or a "b----" when he got riled up.
On July 13, detectives photographed Duncan posing with duct tape over her mouth and her hands tied behind her back, and sent it to Velazquez. When he learned that his plan seemed to be working, he hugged the undercover detective who met him in the parking lot of a Fort Lauderdale diner.
Velazquez then cut his own face with a blade to make it look like he had struggled with his captors, the detective wrote. When they arrived at the warehouse where Velazquez thought he'd be reunited with Duncan, detectives arrested him and handcuffed him with the zip ties he had brought for the kidnapping.
Detectives said that during his meetings, Velazquez mentioned several times that he wanted Duncan "to suffer the same way he did."
The undercover detective wrote that when he warned Velazquez in advance that he would kill Duncan rather than go to jail: "Velazquez tells me that if it comes down to it, he has gloves and would choke her but is going to need help disposing of her body."