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6 Arrested in West Virginia After Woman Abused, Held Captive in House for a Week

A woman who authorities said was sexually abused, beaten and stabbed while held captive for at least a week was repeatedly called a racial slur during the attacks, the victim's mother said.

Six people, all white, including a mother and son and a mother and daughter, have been arrested in connection with the alleged abduction of the 23-year-old black woman, sheriff's officials said Monday.

Authorities were still looking for two people they believe drove the woman to the home where she was abused, said Logan County Chief Deputy V.K. Dingess.

The FBI, which was asked by the sheriff's department to aid in the investigation, will look into whether a hate crime occurred.

The woman's abductors called her the N-word "every time they stabbed her," the woman's mother told The Charleston Gazette for a story published Tuesday.

The woman underwent surgery for leg wounds, Dingess told the paper.

Deputies found the woman Saturday after going to the home in Big Creek, about 35 miles southwest of Charleston, to investigate an anonymous tip.

One of the suspects, Frankie Brewster, was sitting on the front porch and told deputies she was alone, but moments later the woman limped toward the door, her arms outstretched, saying, "Help me," the sheriff's department said in a news release.

Besides being sexually assaulted, the woman had been stabbed four times in the left leg and beaten, Logan County sheriff's Sgt. Sonya Porter said. Her eyes were black and blue. The wounds were inflicted at least a week ago, deputies said.

During her capture, the woman was forced to eat rat and dog feces and drink from the toilet, according to the criminal complaint filed in magistrate court. She also had been choked with a cable cord and her hair was cut, it alleges.

"The things that were done to this woman are just indescribable," Porter said.

One of those arrested, Karen Burton, is accused of cutting the woman's ankle with a knife. She used the N-word in telling the woman she was victimized because she is black, according to the criminal complaint.

Deputies say the woman was also doused with hot water while being sexually assaulted.

"She wakes up in the middle of the night screaming, 'Mommy,"' the mother told the paper. "What's really bad is that we don't know everything they did to her. She is crying all the time."

The Associated Press normally does not name victims of suspected sex crimes, and is not identifying the mother to protect the identity of her daughter.

The six suspects were arrested Saturday and Sunday. Deputies were still trying to determine whether the woman knew her assailants, Porter said.

Brewster, the 49-year-old who owns the home where the alleged attacks occurred, is charged with kidnapping, sexual assault, malicious wounding and giving false information during a felony investigation.

Her son, Bobby R. Brewster, 24, also of Big Creek, is charged with kidnapping, sexual assault, malicious wounding and assault during the commission of a felony.

Burton, 46, of Chapmanville, is charged with malicious wounding, battery and assault during the commission of a felony.

Her daughter Alisha Burton, 23, of Chapmanville, and George A. Messer, 27, of Chapmanville, are charged with assault during the commission of a felony and battery.

Danny J. Combs, 20, of Harts, is charged with sexual assault and malicious wounding.

All six were held Monday in lieu of $100,000 bond each, and all have asked for court-appointed attorneys.