When Kidnapping Victims Get Sued By Kidnapper

There is crazy and then there is crazy. This case out of Topeka, Kansas down in the United States is a good example of the latter. It’s a case of a stupid and desperate criminal. In 2009, a man from Colorado named Jesse Dimmick decided that he would go on a crime spree. The 25-year-old stole a vehicle and was fleeing from the police, when he broke into a home in the Topeka area after crashing his vehicle in the yard. The police wanted to question him about a murder that took place in Colorado. A man named Michael Curtis had been beaten to death in his motel room.

The Case of the Crazy Kidnapper

The home belonged to Jared and Lindsay Rowley. He took them hostage in their own home at knife point. The couple was naturally terrified at the situation but tried to keep things as calm as possible with their captor. They watched a film together in the house while having snacks. It might sound strange, but what else could they do? Dimmick eventually fell asleep, and they were able to escape their home and get help. It was actually the police who woke Dimmick up and arrested him. At the time of the arrest, one of the officer’s rifles discharged accidentally and shot the criminal in the back.

The Second Lawsuit (First)

Normally, that would simply be the end of the story. The couple escaped and the criminal was going to jail and would likely be headed to prison. However, Dimmick felt rebuked by the actions of his victims. He claims that he had an oral contract with them and that they would hide him from the police. He says that their breach of that contract caused his injury, and he’s seeking help to pay for his hospital bills, which were more than $160,000. Of course, being a criminal, he had no way to pay for those hospital bills. He figured he might as well sue. In addition, he wanted another $75,000 for his pain and suffering.

They Beat Him To The First Lawsuit

The Rowley family had actually sued Dimmick first for the fact that he intruded into their home and caused a substantial amount of emotional distress. This is a natural reason to sue. They were terrified because of this man and they likely still suffer from this stress he put them through. It was their suit that prompted him to file his own lawsuit though.

The Law On Oral “Contracts” with Kidnappers

Even if there were any type of contract, oral or otherwise, there would be no way that it was binding since it would have been agreed to under duress and fear for their lives. In addition, it is illegal to hide someone who is a fugitive of the law.

Fortunately, the courts agreed, and they quickly dismissed Dimmick’s suit against his victims. The audacity of trying to sue someone you intentionally harmed is not isolated to this case, but the courts will generally prevail on the side of reason. This is certainly one of the stranger cases out there.

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