The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

March 7, 2013

Jury chosen in kidnapping and assault trial

By Jeff Lehr

PINEVILLE, Mo. — The jury has been chosen and opening arguments in the trial of Johnny Ray Davis Jr., 33, are expected to get underway shortly in Pineville, Mo.

Davis is accused of kidnapping two women, ages 29 and 39, near a Joplin truck stop, driving them into Oklahoma in a pickup truck, and forcing them to perform sexual acts on him along the way. They said they stopped at a farm where the younger woman said Davis raped her inside a barn.

Davis was convicted of a rape in Craig County in 1996 and served 11 years of a 30-year prison term before being released in July 2010.

A probable-cause affidavit filed in Newton County Circuit Court states that the women were punched, their hands bound with zip ties and duct tape.The younger woman tried to run away but was pulled back to the truck by her hair, authorities allege.

The women reportedly pleaded with Davis throughout the abduction and assaults, and they eventually were taken by him to Freeman Hospital West in Joplin for treatment of their injuries. He was arrested a short time later in the parking lot of the hospital.

Davis is facing multiple counts of first-degree assault, kidnapping and  armed criminal action in Missouri.

The trial was moved to McDonald County on a change of venue.