Kidnapping suspect to appear in court

By Paula Horton, Herald staff writer December 27, 2011 

A 31-year-old Richland man accused of kidnapping and sexually assaulting a Pasco woman is expected to appear today in Franklin County Superior Court.

Jonathan Keenan Gordon was supposed to enter a plea last week to charges of first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping with sexual motivation and second-degree assault with sexual motivation.

But Gordon is in custody in the Benton County jail and reportedly refused to be brought to Pasco. A warrant was issued for his arrest.

Gordon is accused of holding a 19-year-old woman against her will in May. The incident was reported to Franklin County sheriff's deputies May 14, court documents said.

The victim told deputies that four days earlier she was taken to a Pasco apartment against her will by Gordon and another man, then forcibly raped several times by Gordon while being held down by the second man, documents said.

A knife was on the night stand in the room, and the woman told investigators that she feared they would use the knife on her if she fought back, documents said.

The second man was identified as Nathan William Murphy, 29, of Pasco. He had faced the same charges as Gordon, but the case against Murphy was dismissed by prosecutors last month.

Prosecutor Shawn Sant told the Herald that initial reports indicated both Gordon and Murphy were involved, but neither man was able to be located by police, so warrants were issued for their arrests.

Murphy was later arrested on his warrant and interviewed by officers. After his version of events was corroborated with the victim and other witnesses accounts, Sant said he determined that the case against Murphy couldn't be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

Charges were dismissed without prejudice, which means it could be refiled.

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