Wanted man faces charges

Suspect accused of kidnapping, intimidation

A man wanted for holding a Crothersville woman against her will and asking her for sexual favors in August recently was arrested in Louisville.

Joseph Michael McLaughlin, 35, of Columbus faces charges of kidnapping with bodily injury and intimidation in connection with the Aug. 28 incident, according to a news release from Officer Rick Meyer with the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department.

McLaughlin made his initial hearing Wednesday morning in Jackson Circuit Court, and his trial was set for 8:30 a.m. May 30.

The 24-year-old woman told police McLaughlin held her against her will on the night of Aug. 28 and drove her around parts of southern Jackson County, according to the probable cause affidavit signed by Meyer and filed in early September in Jackson Circuit Court.

The incident began when a man, later identified as McLaughlin, went to the woman’s residence and told her he had a friend who would pay her $100 to feed his dogs for two weeks, according to court records.

The woman told police she got into a car with McLaughlin and two other people, Meyer said.

McLaughlin let the other two people out of the car when they got near the residence where the dogs were located, the woman told police.

McLaughlin, who lived in the Crothersville area at the time, failed to stop at that residence and wouldn’t let the woman get out of the vehicle, Meyer said.

He also asked the woman for sexual favors, threatened her, locked the doors and wouldn’t let her out, said Meyer, who was assisted by county Officer Jesse Hutchinson.

The woman was eventually able to get the door unlocked and jumped out of the moving vehicle, Meyer said.

The woman, who sustained injuries to a toe and her ankle, told police she went to a nearby residence, and a man gave her a ride back to her home on the west side of Crothersville.

Meyer said police were not able to locate McLaughlin the night of the incident. A warrant was issued Sept. 12 for his arrest on a charge of kidnapping with bodily injury and intimidation.

On Dec. 12, officers with the Louisville Metro Police Department arrested McLaughlin, and he was booked into the Jackson County Jail in Brownstown at 11:28 a.m. Monday.

The kidnapping charge is a Level 5 felony, punishable by one to three years in prison upon conviction. The intimidation charge is a Level 6 felony, punishable by six months to two and a half years in prison upon conviction.

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Aubrey Woods is editor of The (Seymour) Tribune. He can be reached at awoods@tribtown.com or 812-523-7051.