PINE TOWNSHIP – The alleged kidnapping case against a Liberty Township pair have been continued to the Mercer County Court of Common Pleas.
Jory Dean Loughman, 21, and Ariel Star Arblaster, 19, both of 2431 Mercer Butler Pike, were returned to Mercer County after failing to post bond after preliminary hearings Wednesday afternoon with District Judge D. Neil McEwen, Pine Township.
All charged were held to Common Pleas Court, and their arraignments are set for 9 a.m. July 3 with Judge Christopher J. St. John.
Loughman and Arblaster are accused of kidnapping a 15-year-old boy and 18-year-old man on April 20 after an incident at the couple’s home.
The two victims were reportedly held at gunpoint, then tied up and held hostage. Loughman allegedly pistol-whipped the 15-year-old, according to court documents filed by state police.
Police said Loughman told them that they “were probably not getting out alive,” and the victims were ordered to blindfold themselves with T-shirts.
An unidentified male juvenile joined Loughman and Arblaster in leading the victims outside to the back seat of a truck.
Both victims said they heard three gunshots fired from the truck during a drive, after which Loughman stopped and exited the vehicle.
Police said they 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 reportedly stole a watch and cellphone from the victims. Police said Loughman threatened to kill the younger victim’s entire family if he “snitched.”
Police found a loaded firearm in an unsecured location that could have hurt or killed Loughman and Arblaster’s child.
Loughman was charged by state police with two counts each of kidnapping a minor, aggravated assault, kidnapping, making 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, intimidating a witness or victim, possession of a prohibited firearm, and conspiracy to commit robbery.
Arblaster was charged 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, recklessly endangering another person, robbery, and conspiracy to commit robbery.