Police looking for man accused of kidnapping, threatening ex-wife



GREENSBURG, Pa. - Police are looking for a man accused of kidnapping and threatening to kill his ex-wife, who has a protection from abuse order against him.

According to police paperwork, a woman told investigators that she returned to her home and her ex-husband, Dennis Backus, was waiting for her on the back porch.

The alleged victim told police that Dennis Backus immediately put a gun to her head and said, “Don’t do anything stupid.”

The victim said the defendant then made her walk to his vehicle, which was parked about 100 yards away. She said she complied out of fear for her life.

Once inside the car, the woman said she and Dennis Backus talked, and he wanted to discuss the two of them getting back together. The victim said she told the defendant everything he wanted to hear.

According to police paperwork, the victim told investigators that at one point Dennis Backus told her, “We’re both going to die tonight.”

“He had made several statements that she was not going to survive that evening. Fortunately she was able to get away,” Pennsylvania State Trooper Steve Limani said.

Eventually, the woman said she told Dennis Backus that she wanted to go home and he dropped her off within walking distance of her house.

The victim said she locked the doors to her home and called police from inside.

“Obviously it grew really quickly. It escalated. We would expect him to be considered dangerous, he has a handgun,” Limani said.

Channel 11’s Joe Holden reported that Dennis Backus is portrayed as “dangerously violent” in PFAs from 2013 and 2006.

Holden said Backus was also sued in 2003 for allegedly following and then punching a man in the face. The case was settled out of court.

Anyone with information on Dennis Backus’ whereabouts is asked to contact police.

“To physically take someone hostage and put them in your car is a different level of threat, and that's why we’re so concerned and wanted to put his picture out here,” Limani said.

If you want to help police circulate Dennis’ photo, retweet Joe Holden’s tweet or share WPXI-TV’s Facebook post.