If you have been charged with kidnapping in Kentucky, you can hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you fight the charges.
At Pearson & Paris, we have more than 22 years of legal experience that we will use in your defense. Perhaps more importantly, our top criminal defense attorney is a former senior felony prosecutor who knows how the prosecutors handle these cases. That knowledge allows us to create effective strategies ranging from negotiating plea bargains to waging full on court battles.
What is Kidnapping?
In Kentucky, the unlawful restraint of another person falls into two distinct categories: unlawful imprisonment and kidnapping.
A person is guilty of unlawful imprisonment in the first degree when he knowingly and unlawfully restrains another person under circumstances that exposes that person to a risk of serious physical injury. This is a class D felony punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of not less than 1 years nor more than 5 years. K.R.S. § 509.020. Where a person simply unlawful restrains another person without exposing that person to a risk of injury, it is a class A misdemeanor, K.R.S. § 509.030, and it is punishable by a sentence of imprisonment for no more than 1 year.
Kidnapping, on the other hand, is an unlawful imprisonment done for an ulterior motive such as demanding a ransom, to accomplish another felony, or even holding that person as a hostage. K.R.S. § 509.040. Kidnapping is a most serious crime, and in some circumstances can be charged as a Class A felony, which is punishable by a sentence of imprisonment for not less than 20 years nor more than 50 years or life imprisonment.
Possible Defenses for Kidnapping?
In the case of kidnapping, the defense may center on consent. Kidnapping can be conducted only when the victim does not consent to the restraint. Many times, however, kidnapping is charged in the context of domestic violence, when the victim alleges that during an argument, he or she was forcefully removed from one location in the house to another or was not allowed to leave during an argument. When an argument is accompanied by grabbing the other person’s arms or shoulders, a prosecutor may be inclined to charge unlawful imprisonment.
Given the fact that a case is often “overcharged” by adding a kidnapping charge, it is important to interview as many witnesses as possible to clarify what actually happened.
Other defenses may also apply. This includes an analysis of any violation of constitutional rights, such as the right to remain silent, the right to counsel, the right to have any searches and seizures based on probable cause, a proper warrant, and the right to due process in the proper preservation of evidence that may be used against you. Many other defenses are available that rely on scrutinizing and exposing weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case, such as biased or incompetent witnesses, flawed crime scene investigation, flawed administration and procedures in collecting breath, blood or urine for forensic testing, incompetent computer evidence, flawed photo lineups and inaccurate crime scene/accident reconstructions.
It is important that you hire a skilled and experienced lawyer to defend you in a kidnapping or unlawful imprisonment case in Shively, Jefferson County, or across Kentucky.
Call us at 502-208-5170 in the Greater Louisville area and across Kentucky.
For an initial consultation with a Louisville criminal law attorney, contact Pearson & Paris. We represent clients throughout Jefferson, Oldham, Shelby, Spencer, and Bullitt counties in such cities as Louisville, St. Matthews, Lyndon, Prospect, Anchorage, Hurstbourne, Middletown, Jeffersontown, Shively, Crestwood, Goshen, Buckner, La Grange, Simpsonville, Shelbyville, Mt. Washington and Shepherdsville.