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Thursday, March 12, 2009

Carpenter Enters Guilty Plea In Child Kidnapping Case

   A Lawrenceburg man accused of holding a youngster against his will inside his Fifth Street home last year has pleaded guilty to one count of kidnapping.

  Lawrence County Sheriff’s Deputies arrested Donald Joe Carpenter, 46, of 523 Fifth Street, on a single count of kidnapping in connection with an incident that occurred on May 29, 2008.

   At that time a Lawrenceburg woman had requested the assistance of Lawrenceburg Police Officers shortly after her son returned to their home crying. She told officers that he had been playing basketball at Rotary Park with a friend, after which the boys had gone to the friend’s Fifth Street home.

   The child reported that he had taken a shortcut through a nearby alley just before 9:00 p.m. when he was stopped by Carpenter. The victim told officers that Carpenter had placed both hands on his shoulders and pushed him inside his home. He indicated that he sat on the couch for around thirty minutes while Carpenter paced back and forth in front of him.

   When Carpenter went to the bathroom, the boy told officers he made a run for it, fleeing through the front door. He then ran all the way home.

   During an appearance in Lawrence County Circuit Court Tuesday, Carpenter, a registered sex offender, entered a guilty plea to the crime of simple kidnapping. Since he was on probation at the time the incident occurred, Carpenter’s probation was revoked for violating the state’s Sex Offender Registry law. As a result he will be required to serve the remainder of a two-year sentence incarcerated through the Tennessee Department of Corrections.

   Once Carpenter is released from TDOC custody he will be required to serve three years on supervised probation as punishment for the more recent incident.