Police: Stabbed kidnapper was man who claimed he'd cremated Natalee Holloway's remains

Police in North Port say a suspected kidnapper who was stabbed to death this morning is the same man who had professed a connection to Natalee Holloway’s 2005 disappearance in Aruba.

According to a police spokesman, it was just before 7 a.m. when officers responded to a scene along Wesley Lane.  They found a man, later identified as John Christopher Ludwick, who was suffering from stab wounds.  

Ludwick was flown to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police believe he had earlier tried to kidnap a young woman in her driveway, but in the ensuing struggle, he wound up stabbed and fled on foot.  Police declined to identify the potential kidnapping victim, other than to say she and Ludwick knew each other.

Ludwick, 32, has previously claimed that he had dug up and then cremated the remains of Natalee Holloway on behalf of his friend, Joran van der Sloot.

It was not immediately clear what, if any, connection Wednesday morning’s crime could have had to the Holloway case, but police said they’d alerted their counterparts investigating her disappearance, which remains unsolved.

“We are aware of Mr. Ludwick’s history and comments surrounding the disappearance of Natalee Ann Holloway in Aruba during May of 2005,” NPPD’s Josh Taylor stated.  “The correct authorities who are working that case have been notified. Our investigation in this local case is ongoing."