SAN DIEGO -- The mother of a young woman kidnapped, shot and left for dead told her daughter’s story of survival Tuesday night.
“My daughter spent nine days on life support,” said the woman.
Her daughter, Mya, is a key witness in a murder case. For that reason, FOX 5 is keeping her and her mother’s identities secret.
Mya’s mother said it all started on April 12 when she got a phone call saying her daughter was kidnapped.
“They wanted $2,500 or they were going to kill her,” said the mother. “I didn’t know what to make of it. At the moment, you know, it's like your worst nightmare.”
Cesar Alvarado, Michael Pedraza and Britney Canale are accused in Mya’s kidnapping. On Monday, the trio faced a judge for the first time. They are accused in a two-day crime spree, including the vicious murder of Chula Vista businessman Mario Serhan.
The woman told FOX 5 that Mya involuntarily became involved when Pedraza contacted her daughter.
“He sent her a message on Facebook and said he needed help or his life was in danger,” said Mya’s mother.
She said her daughter knew Pedraza from a Narcotics Anonymous program. She trusted the man and agreed to meet him.
“They wound up going to a local restaurant that was right there and he had the people waiting. They came up, had the gun and forced her in the car,” said the woman.
Once in the car, Mya was held at gunpoint and tasered. The mother said her daughter was held captive for 24 hours and witnessed the moment Serhan was gunned down.
“He was innocent. They thought he was a cop. No one, not even a cop, deserves that. Nobody deserves that,” said Mya’s mother.
After Serhan’s murder, Mya was brought to Sunset Cliffs, where she begged and pleaded Pedraza, the man she trusted, for her life.
“When he was walking her down the stairs at Sunset Cliffs, he told her to stop crying like a little b-word and to take it with some dignity,” said the mother.
Mya was shot three times and left for dead in the cold ocean water.
“She was severely hypothermic when they found her,” said Mya’s mom.
It was a tourist who found her. Mya was brought to the hospital in critical condition, where she survived and lived to identify her attackers.
“I owe them everything. You saved my baby. If it wasn’t for them I don't think she would be here, you know,” her mother said.
Despite her survival, Mya’s road to recovery won’t be easy. She was left a quadriplegic. Doctors won't know the permanency of her condition for another six to 12 months.
“She just wants to go home, but no commercial airline will take her,” said her mother. “Our only solution is a private jet, but that will cost us $30,000 and we can’t afford that.”
Her mother said as Mya recovers, her goal is to seek justice for Serhan and his family.
Family friends set up a GoFundMe to raise money to help cover medical costs.
Alvarado, Pedraza and Canale face special circumstance allegations of lying in wait, murder during a robbery or kidnapping and murder by discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle. All three are being held without bail.