DeKalb County police arrested a man on charges of kidnapping and enticing a child for indecent purposes. Alvin Joiner allegedly abducted a young girl at the beginning of last month. According to reports, he kidnapped a Miller Grove High School girl (14 years old) while she was walking to school. Apparently, he only drove a short distance before letting her out of his car near the school. However, while she was in the car with Joiner, she recorded the inappropriate and sexual comments he made to her. Three other female Miller Grove students have reported similar encounters with an older man who matches Joiner's description. Joiner was taken into custody after he allegedly returned to the scene of the incident.
What constitutes a charge of kidnapping?
Georgia law defines kidnapping in Georgia as when “a person abducts or steals away another person without lawful authority and holds such other person against his or her will” (O.C.G.A. §16-5-40). A slight movement is enough to constitute the crime of kidnapping.
Joiner's alleged abduction of the girl, even though he just drove her down the road, could be enough to constitute kidnapping.
As with any other crime, in order to be convicted of kidnapping, the state of Georgia will have to prove that Joiner is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If he is found guilty and convicted, then he will be convicted of a felony. There are two different types of punishment for this felony charge.
- If the victim is 14 or older, the prison sentence is between ten and twenty years.
- If the victim is younger than 14, the prison sentence is heightened to either a life sentence or a minimum of twenty years with probation for life after release.
- If the kidnapping was for a ransom or if any bodily injury occurred to the victim, the prison sentence will be for life or the death penalty is also an option.
In this case, since the girl is 14 years old, Joiner is facing a prison sentence of up to twenty years if convicted.
What constitutes a charge of enticing a child for indecent purposes?
Georgia law defines enticing a child for indecent purposes in Georgia as when a person “solicits, entices, or takes any child under the age of 16 years to a place whatsoever for the purpose of child molestation or indecent acts” (O.C.G.A. §16-6-5).
Joiner allegedly taking the girl away and making inappropriate and sexual comments to her could show intent of future molestation or could hold enough weight that the comments could be considered inappropriate enough on their own. Again, as with any other crime, in order to be convicted of enticing a child for indecent purposes, the state of Georgia will have to prove that Joiner is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
Just as with kidnapping, there are some differences in punishment if convicted.
- If the victim is between 14 and 16, and the convicted person is at least 18 (and no more than 4 years older), the crime is considered a misdemeanor.
- If the convicted person is 18 or older, the crime is considered a felony, and the punishment is a prison sentence of ten to thirty years. The convicted person will also be required to register as a sex offender.
In this case, Joiner is facing a prison sentence of up to thirty years if convicted as well as being required to be a Registered Sex Offender.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime, you will need to be represented by a top-rated Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer. No one should be assumed guilty just because he or she has been accused of a crime. We will never assume that just because you've been charged with a crime that you are guilty. Call us today.