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Kidnapping Conviction Reversed by Ninth Circuit Court

United States v. Jackson Docket: 19-10070, Opinion Date: February 3, 2022. Jackson violently attacked his girlfriend. The entire attack lasted six-seven minutes. Jackson was convicted of assault resulting in serious bodily injury, 18 U.S.C. 113(a)(6), and kidnapping, section 1201(a)(2). The Ninth Circuit reversed the kidnapping conviction. In kidnapping prosecutions under section 1201(a)(2), courts should consider the factors set forth in precedent to evaluate whether the charged conduct constitutes kidnapping. Applying those factors, the court concluded that the government failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a kidnapping occurred. The first factor, the duration of the holding, weighs against kidnapping, as a seven-minute holding would be quite brief on the spectrum of possible kidnappings. The second and third factors—the presence of a separate offense and the degree to which the holding was inherent in the other offense—strongly indicate that there was no kidnapping. The primary conduct here was an assault causing serious bodily injury, which inherently requires the defendant to keep the victim in close enough proximity to inflict the injuries. The fourth factor, whether the holding created significant danger independent of the separate offense, also weighs against classifying the conduct as kidnapping. To the extent that there was any confinement separate from the assault, it was not an independent source of danger. #kidnapreversal #primaryconduct #9thcircuit

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