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Heartbreaking Details About The 7-Year-Old Girl Who Was Kidnapped, Attacked, Thrown Off A Bridge And SURVIVED

Photo: Independent

A 7-year-old girl was sleeping on a chair during a summer cookout at her grandparent's house in Worcester, Massachusetts this past weekend when a 35-year-old man kidnapped her. 

Joshua Hubert, who is a friend of the girl's family and was attending the cookout as a guest, took the girl around 2:30 a.m. He drove around with her in his car for more than an hour. Police say at one point, he stopped driving and started strangling her. 

The attack stopped, and Hubert continued to drive. He made his way to bridge over Lake Quinsigamond, which is 85-feet deep, and threw the girl into the lake. 

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The brave girl survived the fall and swam to shore. She then ran to a nearby house for help. Police found her at 4 a.m. 

“She was put in a car, strangled, and thrown off a bridge into Lake Quinsigamond,” Worcester police said Monday in a statement. “She survived the drop and swam to shore, where she was eventually discovered with visible, but not life-threatening injuries.”

Police said when they found the girl, she was soaking wet, bruised around the neck and still wearing her pajamas. They say it's a miracle she survived the fall. One 19-year-old man jumped and died from that same bridge in 2012. 

Hubert has only been charged with kidnapping so far, but prosecutors said there's a strong likelihood other charges will be brought as the investigation continues. His lawyer said he will plead "not guilty," and told police that he wasn't involved with the incident. 

This isn't his first time in a court room.

Several years ago, he fought with Valeria Zawalich, the mother of his son, in a custody dispute that resulted in her being fired as a police dispatcher when she took the child without permission despite Hubert having custody. 

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He told a newspaper in 2009 that he was "thrilled" to reunite with his son, but "not thrilled" that he was in the middle of this. 

"She uses him like a pawn," he said. Zawalich had charged filed against Hubert after she told police he kicked in the door to an apartment they sometimes shared


Police are currently looking for surveillance video from any local businesses to help them bring more charges to Hubert. They still haven't released a possible motive for the attack, but did say the girl was abducted in a light colored Saturn Ion. 

A prosecutor said the girl also had contusions on one of her legs, her forearms and wrist and hemorrhages on her face and scalp, which led Hubert to held without bail pending a hearing to determine how dangerous he is. 

Emily Blackwood is an editor at YourTango who covers pop culture, dating, relationships and everything in between. You can follow her on Instagram (@blackw00d) and Twitter (@emztweetz).