LIBERTY TOWNSHIP — A man and woman are accused of kidnapping two teenagers Saturday night, reportedly holding them hostage until they escaped.
Jory Dean Loughman, 21, and Ariel Star Arblaster, 19, both of 2431 Mercer Butler Pike, are in Mercer County Jail on multiple charges filed by state police.
According to criminal complaints filed with District Judge D. Neil McEwen, state police responded at 1:42 a.m. Sunday to a report that an 18-year-old man and 15-year-old boy were held hostage after a reported incident about 9:30 p.m. Saturday at Loughman and Arblaster’s home.
The victims said they were getting ready to leave the residence when Loughman produced a handgun and hit the 15-year-old with the weapon, police said.
Loughman then ordered the victims into the kitchen at gunpoint and made them sit on the floor. Arblaster, Loughman’s girlfriend, brought chairs into the kitchen for the victims.
Police said Loughman told them that they “were probably not getting out alive.” An unidentified male juvenile then arrived at the home.
The victims were instructed to blindfold themselves by tying T-shirts around their heads and Loughman bound their wrists with duct tape, according to the criminal complaint.
Loughman, Arblaster and the male juvenile walked the victims outside to a truck and placed them in the back seat. Loughman drove while Arblaster sat in the front passenger seat, and the male juvenile followed in another vehicle.
Both victims said they heard three gunshots fired from the truck during the drive, after which Loughman stopped and exited the vehicle.
Police said the men escaped when the older victim managed to free his hands and released the 15-year-old. The 18-year-old drove off in the truck with the younger victim.
Loughman and Arblaster are charged with theft, based on allegations that they stole a watch and cell phone from the victims. Police said Loughman threatened to kill the younger victim’s entire family if he “snitched.”
Police served a search warrant Sunday for the couple’s home. Loughman and Arblaster were taken into
custody and transported to the state police barracks.
Troopers took multiple items from their home including a handgun, which was loaded with the safety switch off. The weapon was found in an unsecured location that could have hurt or killed Loughman and Arblaster’s child.
During an interview with police, Loughman admitted to having the pistol.
Loughman was charged Monday by state police with two counts each of kidnapping a minor, aggravated assault, kidnapping, terroristic threats, and simple assault, five counts of robbery, and one count each of unlawful restraint of a minor, false imprisonment of a minor, false imprisonment, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, carrying a firearm without a license, unlawful restraint, endangering welfare of children, recklessly endangering another person, and intimidating a witness or victim.
Arblaster was charged Monday by state police with two counts each of kidnapping of a minor and kidnapping, unlawful restraint of a minor, false imprisonment of a minor, false imprisonment, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, unlawful restraint, endangering welfare of children, and recklessly endangering another person.
Both Loughman and Arblaster were arraigned Monday afternoon before McEwen of Pine Township. They were returned to Mercer County Jail after failing to post bond; Loughman is being held on $200,000 bond, and Arblaster was jailed on $150,000 bond.
Their preliminary hearings are set for 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, with McEwen.