Guilty plea entered in kidnapping of Verizon employee

MINNEAPOLIS - One of two men charged in the brazen kidnapping of a man from his own driveway is pleading guilty to the crime.

Prosecutors say 29-year-old Ronald Jackson of Richfield and an associated stuffed a Verizon Wireless employee into the trunk of a car.

Jackson will be sentenced April 29. His attorney said he would seek probation, but prosecutors will request a 57-month prison sentence, which is within the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines.

Police were called to a house in Loretto around 9:15 p.m. on September 11, 2013 by a woman who said she heard her husband's car pull up. When he didn't come into the house, she looked out and heard a trunk slam on a red car parked in her neighbor's driveway. The car immediately sped off east on Chippewa Road.

About a half-hour later police searching for the missing man found a red Dodge Charger parked north of Minnesota 55 on Pioneer Trail. Defendants Ronald Jackson and William Graham were standing outside the vehicle; They put up their hands as if to surrender but eventually fled when someone inside the trunk started pounding.

Officers quickly chased down and captured the men, released the victim from the trunk and recovered a gun in a ditch near the car. The victim told police that when he pulled into his driveway a car pulled into his neighbor's drive, Graham jumped out with a gun and forced him out of his vehicle.

At his plea hearing Monday, Jackson admitted tying up the victim before putting him in the trunk. He also said he and Graham asked the victim where the keys to the store were, only to learn that they were still in the victim's car.

Jackson also admitted that the gun in the ditch was a black BB gun which belonged to Graham.

The trial for William Graham is scheduled for June 2.


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