The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Top Stories

May 1, 2013

Judge assesses prison term in violent abduction case

NEOSHO, Mo. — A judge sentenced Johnny Davis Jr. to 15 years in prison Wednesday for violently abducting two women in 2011 while on parole from a previous rape conviction.

It could be considerably longer than that before Davis, 33, gets out from behind bars.

Associate Circuit Judge John LePage assessed him 15 years on each of two counts of kidnapping and two counts of assault on which a jury had convicted him in March. The judge ordered that the terms run concurrently. But he also ordered that they be imposed after Davis completes whatever time he has left to serve in Oklahoma.

Davis was paroled in Oklahoma in 2010 after serving 11 years of a 30-year term for raping a teacher. A parole violation remains pending against him in Craig County. He also still faces a rape charge in Nowata County, with respect to one of the victims he kidnapped near Joplin on Dec. 26, 2011, and took with him to Oklahoma.

Prosecutor Jake Skouby said after the sentencing hearing Wednesday in Newton County Circuit Court that he was pleased to see the judge make the defendant’s prison time in Missouri run consecutively to any remaining time he serves in Oklahoma.

“It’s rare for us, in my opinion, to deal with a defendant as dangerous as this defendant is,” Skouby said. “He’s just too dangerous to be out on the street.”

The victims were 29 and 39 years of age when Davis abducted them. The women thought they were meeting someone who had brought them some methamphetamine when they encountered Davis in the early morning hours on Cedar Drive south of the Petro truck stop in Joplin.

Neither woman knew the man who attacked them when they arrived at the rendezvous, punching one of them in the side of her head and the other in her face. He then forced them into his truck and drove them into Oklahoma.

The women testified that Davis cruised around for 12 hours, forcing them to perform sex on him as well as sex acts with each other. Later, he stopped on a gravel road and raped the younger woman in the truck, they said. He then raped her again at an abandoned farmhouse, they said.

Davis reportedly was high on meth and extremely paranoid throughout most of the abduction. The women testified that they were too afraid to try to get away from him and instead adopted a tactic of trying to get him to empathize with them.

He eventually began coming down from the meth, drove them back to Joplin and dropped them off at Freeman Hospital West, where the younger woman sought treatment for a broken nose and injured collarbone.

Davis never took the witness stand in his own defense at his trial. His public defender instead tried to make an issue of whether the women’s accounts were believable.

Venue

JOHNNY DAVIS JR.’S TRIAL was moved to McDonald County on a change of venue from Newton County. But his sentencing hearing was held Wednesday in Newton County by agreement of the defense and prosecution.

1
Text Only
Top Stories
  • r041814capbus4.jpg Funding shortfall could hinder public transportation in Southeast Kansas

    For the past two years, Pittsburg State University sophomore Travis Cook has been using public transportation to get to and from his classes. He began using the bus his freshman year, when he didn’t have a vehicle to drive even to the grocery store — which is said to be the case for many who use the service.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bruner denied change of venue for murder trial

    Circuit Judge Gayle Crane has denied a change of venue for a defendant charged with fatally shooting an assistant football coach at Missouri Southern State University. The attorney for Jeffrey Bruner claimed pretrial publicity as the reason for seeking a change of venue in Jasper County Circuit Court.

    April 18, 2014

  • Russell family sues city, Joplin police

    Family members of a teenage girl whose suicide a year ago brought them into conflict with police officers and emergency medical technicians are suing the city and the Joplin Police Department. Kevin and Julissa Russell and their son, Brant Russell, are the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed in Jasper County Circuit Court. The action filed on the Russells’ behalf by Kansas City attorney Andrew Protzman names the city, the Police Department and Officers Austin Wolf and Tyler Christensen as defendants.

    April 18, 2014

  • Kansas Regents stick with social media policy

    After directing a committee to study a controversial social media policy and make recommended changes, the Kansas Board of Regents appears to not be changing the policy at all. It’s left some in academia baffled by why it appointed the work group in the first place.

    April 18, 2014

  • Britain Easter Pilgri_Cast.jpg SLIDESHOW: Good Friday observances around the world Around the world, Christians are coming together in observance of Good Friday, which they believe was the day Jesus was crucified. Here are some photos from Good Friday commemorations around the world.

    April 18, 2014

  • Missouri House votes to expand sales tax exemptions

    Pizza parlors, doughnut shops and even convenience stores all could be in line for a tax break on the food that they make and sell as a result of a measure moving through the Missouri Legislature.

    April 18, 2014

  • 041714 School safe rooms4_72.jpg Joplin school district readies community safe rooms for storm season

    Thousands of Joplin residents will soon be able to stay safe during storms in some of the region’s newest shelters. Community safe rooms at Cecil Floyd, Stapleton, McKinley and Eastmorland elementary schools, which double as gymnasiums, and Junge Field, which will double as a field house, are expected to be open within the next few weeks, according to Mike Johnson, the school district’s director of construction.

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • 041714 Treble Makers.jpg Carl Junction ‘Treble Makers’ to sing at Springfield Cardinals’ stadium

    Next month, 75 Carl Junction sixth-grade students will sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at Hammons Field before a Springfield Cardinals game. And with more than 600 parents, family members and other residents planning to attend, the May 3 event has been dubbed “Carl Junction Day.”

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Public hearing set on posed TIF district

    Financial details of a proposed new tax increment financing district for the Silver Creek Galleria area will be discussed in detail at an April 28 public hearing, members of the city’s TIF Commission were told Thursday. Chris Williams, a TIF attorney representing the city of Joplin, told the panel the Thursday meeting was intended to walk commissioners through the public hearing steps.

    April 17, 2014

  • Volunteer projects spark two bills in Jefferson City

    Bills moving through the Missouri House and Senate were inspired by a volunteer project in Carl Junction last year that stalled over a question of whether those volunteers had to be paid prevailing wage under Missouri law. “This bill is very simple. All it says is if someone is a volunteer, they won’t be forced to be paid prevailing wage,” state Rep. Charlie Davis, R-Webb City, told lawmakers during a hearing on his bill last week.

    April 17, 2014