Victims tackle, detain man accused of attempted Broadway abduction

Police say a group of victims stopped a man from trying to kidnap two women in downtown Nashville.
As WSMV's Brendan Tierney reports, the group of women fought back against a man who police say tried to kidnap them.
Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 10:03 AM CST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) – A man has been arrested after Nashville police said he tried to pull out a gun and abduct two women on Lower Broadway early Sunday morning.

Christian Lee Stehle, 23, is charged with several counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and having a weapon while intoxicated.

Around 3 a.m. Sunday, Metro Police officers said they got a call about a man with a gun outside of Bridgestone Arena. When they arrived, they found Stehle had been detained by a group of women.

Witnesses said Stehle had approached two women and “tried to take them home.” When the women told Stehle to leave, the 23-year-old told them he had a gun, showed it to the group, and tried to pull it out of his waistband, police said.

The group of six victims was able to tackle Stehle, disarm him and pin him to the ground until police arrived, according to an affidavit. All six victims said they feared Stehle would hurt or kill them.

Christian Lee Stehle
Christian Lee Stehle(MNPD)

Retired police officer and self-defense expert Ken Alexandrow said the women did everything right when they were approached by the suspect.

Alexandrow teaches classes to groups around the country about situations like this through his company Agape Tactical and said the most important thing is to stay alert and stay together with other people.

“The three keys to survival are surprise, speed of your attack and the violence of your actions,” Alexandrow said. “It seems they used those keys to hold him down and disarm him, hurt him a little bit and hold him for police.”

“A trained person, it heightens their awareness,” Alexandrow said. “It makes them almost superhuman when it hits the body. But for the untrained person, we become frozen in fear.”

Being surrounded by loud music and drinking only makes it more important to be aware of your surroundings, Alexandrow said. He wants people to put their phones down and know how to utilize things like their keys for self-defense even if they think they are in a safe area.

“I was shocked,” Cindy Engel said about hearing about the incident. “I can’t imagine something like that happening in a city, someone being held at gunpoint.”

“It seems very safe, so you wouldn’t think something like that would happen,” Valerie Hoppert said. “I guess it would make us a little more vigilant as we are walking the streets.”

Stehle, who officers said was highly intoxicated, was arrested. He’s remains in jail in lieu of a $75,000 bond.