By Ethan Colbert
A Bowling Green man was sentenced to 34 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections after pleading guilty to kidnapping, tampering, unlawful use of a weapon, and passing bad checks.
As was previously reported by the Times, Justin R. House, of Bowling Green, was arrested by local law enforcement in September 2017 after allegedly luring a woman to his home in Bowling Green.
In the probable cause statement filed with the Pike County Circuit Court Clerk’s office, authorities say that House told the unidentified female victim that he needed to give her money to put on his account at the Pike County Jail, where he was soon going to turn himself in on a probation violation related to a previous charge of forgery.
The woman was to use the money for House’s commissary account, according to law enforcement.
When the female victim arrived at the property on Broadway in Bowling Green, House allegedly handed the woman an envelope, which he said contained cash.
Yet, according to Pike County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Fisher, the envelope contained no cash.
“In fact, it was just pieces of paper,” Fisher said in a statement to the Times.
After exchanging the envelope with the female, House then allegedly attempted to kiss the victim. She refused and told House that she was leaving for work.
After a struggle, House was able to stop the victim from leaving by pressing a knife to her throat and threatening to kill her.
It was at this time that House allegedly forced the woman into her truck and drove the truck outside of Bowling Green.
According to Fisher, House made repeated threats that he was going to kill the victim, but the victim was able to talk convince House that if he let her go, she would help him and not report the incident.
House eventually cut the victim’s ropes and left her with her truck.
Once freed, the woman went to local law enforcement to report what had transpired.
House was apprehended later that day.
Shortly after charges were filed in this case, the defendant Justin R. House requested that the case be moved from Pike County.
The case was assigned to Judge Rachel Bringer Shepherd, of the Marion County Circuit Court.
It was before Judge Shepherd that House made his plea of guilty on October 15 and would be sentenced on Thursday.
In case number 18MR-CR00067, Judge Bringer-Shepherd sentenced House to 15 years for kidnapping; 7 years for tampering 1st degree (operating a motor vehicle without permission); and 4 years for unlawful use of a weapon. These sentences all were ordered to run consecutively to each other for a total of 26 years.
On the kidnapping charge, House will be required to serve 85% of his sentence before being eligible for parole.
House was also sentenced in case number 18MR-CR00068 on 3 charges of felony passing bad checks. He was sentenced to 4 years in Missouri Department of Corrections on each count with 2 of the counts running consecutive and one concurrent, for a total of 8 years. This sentence is also consecutive to the 26 years ordered in the above case.