When someone has accused you of kidnapping, one of the first things you should do is speak with a lawyer to ensure you have the legal representation you need. Kidnapping is a very serious crime, and if you do not have legal representation when you go to court that understands how to properly defend someone who is charged with kidnapping, you face very serious punishments. When you hire an attorney, you are getting an aggressive attorney who will look at the facts of your case to determine the best possible defense.
Are there different types of kidnapping charges?
When it comes to kidnapping, many people do not realize that there is more than one type of kidnapping charge.
- Simple Kidnapping. When a person commits simple kidnapping, it is not necessarily what we see in movies. Instead of taking someone and putting them in the back of your car, simple kidnapping involved any type of fear or force that makes another person go somewhere without their consent. If convicted of simple kidnapping, it could be a felony.
- Child Abduction. This type of kidnapping is specific to kidnapping minor children, and you do not have to take the child any substantial distance to have a police officer charge you with child abduction. To be convicted of child abduction, the person must intentionally take a child away from the person who has custody of that child.
- Aggravated Kidnapping. This is a very serious type of kidnapping and may involve hurting the victim, making a ransom demand, sexually assaulting them, or even killing the victim. If you are charged with aggravated kidnapping, it is a very serious felony and you may face life in prison.
- False Imprisonment. If you restrained someone or kept them in a location without their consent where they were unable to leave, this is false imprisonment. In some cases, your attorney may be able to argue a kidnapping charge down to a false imprisonment charge.
Are there defenses to kidnapping?
Yes. It is possible to successfully argue a few defenses when it comes to kidnapping or false imprisonment charges. For example, your attorney may be able to find evidence that you were falsely accused. It is possible to challenge eyewitness testimonies (the person they may have seen was not actually you) and even forensic evidence. If they are unable to place you at the scene of the crime, it is possible to have the charge dropped. Depending on the evidence, it is also possible to negotiate a plea deal depending on what they are charging you with.
If you have been accused of false imprisonment or kidnapping, you do not have to accept these charges. Speak with a trusted lawyer to see how they can help you with your case.
Thanks to Richard J. Banta, P.C. for their insight into criminal defense and kidnapping charges.