Winter Haven police say they have arrested a man who put a knife to a former co-worker's throat and stole her vehicle.

Tommy Harwell, 31, was arrested after a warrant was issued, police said Friday night.

Police said Harwell came across the woman around 5:45 p.m. Thursday at the Northgate Shopping Center. The two had worked together at Winter Haven hospital earlier in the year, so the two exchanged quick pleasantries, according to a news release.

But officers said Harwell then asked if she could help jumpstart his car because of a dead battery.

The 57-year-old woman agreed. She drove him to the Banyan Beach Motel at 1630 6th St. NW, where he said he was staying, but the woman apparently didn't see the vehicle she was describing.

She stayed put as Harwell went into the motel office. Upon coming back, police said he jumped into the passenger's seat and put a kitchen knife to her throat.

"Get out," Harwell allegedly said to the victim.

She was able to push the knife away, grab her phone and get out of the car. Police say Harwell hopped into the driver's seat of the maroon 2011 Nissan Altima and drove north on Highway 17.

The victim received minor cuts from the knife but did not need to be hospitalized.

Harwell has a criminal history that includes a recent arrest on cocaine charges, police said.

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