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The Carthage Press
  • Rural Jasper man faces felony charges

  • A rural Jasper man was arrested Monday morning for allegedly kidnapping a former girlfriend and holding her against her will in his home for two days, according to the Jasper County Sheriff's Office.
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  • A rural Jasper man was arrested Monday morning for allegedly kidnapping a former girlfriend and holding her against her will in his home for two days, according to the Jasper County Sheriff's Office.
    Sheriff's Capt. Derek Walrod said Michael L. Ritchhart, 49, Jasper, was arrested at a friend’s home early Monday.
    Jasper County Prosecutor Dean Dankelson said he filed three felony charged against Ritchhart on Monday, one count of first degree domestic assault, one count of kidnapping and one count of first degree burglary.
    The Jasper County Sheriff's Office said the investigation started when sheriff's deputies and medical personnel responded to a medical call at 7 a.m. Sunday at 11705 Thorn Road, about two miles east of Jasper.
    Walrod said responders found a woman with injuries to her face, hands, feet and legs.
    Walrod said the woman told deputies that Ritchhart had come to her home Friday night, took her to his home, and held her since then with no food and only a little water.
    Walrod said the woman told deputies she tried to hide from Ritchhart when he came to the home, but he found her and beat her before forcing her into his truck, then forcing her into his home.
    "It also appears that the suspect is the ex-boyfriend of the victim and she had a protection order against him at the time of the incident," the Sheriff's Office said in a written release. "On Aug. 25, 2014, the suspect was located and arrested and is currently in custody at the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office Detention Center awaiting the filing of formal charges."
    Walrod said investigators were still interviewing Ritchhart on Monday afternoon and more charges may be sought against him after interviews are complete.

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