A Beckley man was arrested this weekend for allegedly kidnapping three adults at a party and forcing them to drive him to a local alcohol and tobacco store, while also threatening to shoot and eat them, police said.
John Will Jackson, 40, was charged Monday with one felony count of attempted robbery and three felony counts of kidnapping after he forced the victims - all over the age of 18 - to drive him to Smoker Friendly in Elkins on Randolph Avenue.
According to the criminal complaint filed in Randolph County Magistrate Clerk's office, Trooper D.T. Stallings with the Elkins detachment of the West Virginia State Police was dispatched at about 3 a.m. Sunday to Smoker Friendly's parking lot to assist Sgt. S.R. Judy with the Elkins Police Department.
When Stallings arrived, he saw three people sitting in a green Subaru Legacy and another man secured in the rear of Judy's Elkins police cruiser. Stallings interviewed the three adult victims seated in the Legacy - Dustin Lee Redman, Heather Snead and Jonathan Belachew. Redman, the driver, said he'd been at a party earlier Saturday night in Beverly when a fight broke out, and he, Snead and Belachew decided to leave.
The three went outside and were attempting to enter Redman's vehicle when Jackson allegedly approached Redman "with his hand concealed in his waist band, as though clutching a weapon" and demanded that Redman let him in the car, the complaint states. Redman said he complied with the request, and once Jackson climbed inside the Subaru Legacy, he allegedly ordered Redman to drive him to Elkins.
Redman informed Stallings that during the ride into Elkins, Jackson allegedly repeatedly threatened to "shoot," "bite" and "eat" the three victims, according to the complaint. When they reached the Smoker Friendly parking lot, Jackson demanded that Redman, Snead and Belachew exit the car and leave the keys inside. Redman again complied, but after stepping out of the car, he called the police.
In a separate statement, Belachew told Stallings that he, Redman and Snead had let Jackson in the car because they were "scared for what he might do," since Jackson allegedly threatened to shoot the victims and bite their arms, Stallings wrote.
Stallings told The Inter-Mountain Monday that Jackson did not have a firearm in his possession.
"He did not have a weapon on him, though he presented as if he did," Stallings said.
Jackson remained in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail on a $1,496 bond as of presstime.
Contact Katie Kuba by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.