Criminal Defense


Kidnapping can be charged in two manners: kidnapping in the first degree and kidnapping in the second degree.

A person is guilty of First Degree Kidnapping if he willfully:

  • seizes,
  • confines,
  • entices,
  • decoys,
  • abducts,
  • conceals,
  • kidnaps, or
  • carries away a person by any means whatsoever,

with the intent to hold or detain, or who holds or detains a person for the purpose of:

  • ransom,
  • reward,
  • to commit sexual assault,
  • extortion,
  • robbery,
  • killing or inflicting substantial bodily harm upon the person, or
  • to exact money or valuable things for the return or disposition of the kidnapped person.

When minors are the alleged victims, a person is guilty of first degree kidnapping if he willfully:

  • ​leads,
  • takes,
  • entices, or
  • carries away or detains any minor,

with the intent to:

  • keep,
  • imprison,
  • confine,
  • with the intent to hold the minor to unlawful service, or

perpetrate any unlawful act.

A person is guilty of Second Degree Kidnapping if he willfully and without authorization of law:

  • seizes,
  • takes,
  • carries away, or
  • kidnaps another person,

with the intent to:

  • keep the person secretly imprisoned,
  • for the purpose of conveying the person out of state without authority of law, or
  • detain against the person’s will.

Kidnapping in the First Degree:

Kidnapping in the First Degree is a Category A Felony. The penalty for such a crime is dependent on whether the victim received substantial bodily harm in the kidnapping, holding or escape from the kidnapper.

Kidnapping in the First Degree with Substantial Bodily Harm:

  • Life without the possibility of parole;
  • Life with the possibility of parole with eligibility for parole after 15 years; or
  • A definite term of 40 years with eligibility for parole after 15 years.

Kidnapping in the First Degree without Substantial Bodily Harm:

  • Life with eligibility for parole after 5, or
  • A definite term of 15 years, with eligibility for parole after 5 years.

Kidnapping in the Second Degree:

Kidnapping in the Second Degree is a Category B Felony which is punishable by:

  • ​2 to 15 years in prison, and
  • A fine up to $15,000.

The Victim was Not Physically Moved

If the victim was not physically moved during an incident, the lesser charge of false imprisonment should apply. This serves as a defense to the serious charge of kidnapping.


If the alleged victim is old enough to consent, had the ability to consent, and gave consent, then there was no kidnapping.

image of kidnapping victim in handcuffs

Start Your Defense Today!

Your case is unique with different facts, people, and circumstances. Defenses not listed could apply. During your consultation, Jherna Shahani will evaluate your case and begin working on your defense strategy. Call Your Domestic Violence Defender or 702-625-7551 for a FREE consultation.