Saturday, 18 May 2024

Man faces possible 14 years in prison for 2007 kidnap case

LAKEPORT – A Mendocino County man is facing a potential sentence of 14 years in prison after he was convicted last week of a number of felonies related to a December 2007 kidnapping and robbery case in Clearlake.


Anthony Scott Cape, 42, was convicted by a jury on Sept. 9 of five felony offenses, including kidnapping, robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury and making a criminal threat, according to a report from the Lake County District Attorney's Office.


Witnesses revealed that the violent episode began on Dec. 4, 2007, when the 25-year-old male victim, a Mendocino County resident, arrived at a Clearlake residence in the middle of the night.


The victim, who had a history of dealing marijuana, had been invited to the residence to obtain marijuana to sell, according to testimony.


He entered the residence with two other individuals. While the victim used the restroom, Cape emerged from hiding, and beat the victim after knocking him into the empty bathtub by stomping on the victim's head with work boots and punching him in the face with closed fists.


Another person then joined Cape in the bathroom and assisted Cape by helping bind the victim's wrists and ankles with black plastic zip ties.


Cape and the other perpetrator left the victim momentarily in the bathroom, and when they returned, they caught the victim attempting to call 911 from his cell phone. They grabbed the phone and forced the victim to the garage where the victim's car had been moved. Cape and the other man opened the victim's trunk, removed the victim's belongings from inside, and then stuffed the victim in the trunk.


They were then joined by the other man who had gone to the residence with the victim. With the victim in the trunk, the three men drove through Clearlake.


Unknown to Cape and the others, the victim had a second cell phone which he tried to use to contact the police from inside the trunk. Being unfamiliar with the city of Clearlake, the victim was unable to tell the 911 dispatcher his precise location. He was only able to explain the brief circumstances of his abduction and the type of vehicle he was in.


Clearlake Police Department officers attempted unsuccessfully to locate the victim's vehicle while he was calling 911 from its trunk.


The vehicle turned off the main road and onto Ogulin Canyon Road. Believing that if he did not escape he would be killed, the victim used the emergency latch from inside the trunk to raise the lid. The victim was able to roll out of the moving vehicle and into a ditch where he ended up staying the night.


In the morning, the victim was able to cut the zip ties from his wrists and ankles and seek help.


Clearlake Police Detective Sgt. Tom Clements personally headed the investigation which resulted in the overwhelming evidence against Cape, including Cape's hand print evidence on the trunk of the abandoned vehicle.


Judge Richard Martin, who presided over the trial, is expected to sentence the defendant on Oct. 6.


Cape faces a potential sentence of 14 years in state prison, the District Attorney's Office reported. Because at least one of the convictions is classified as a violent felony strike, Cape will be required to spend at least 85 percent of his sentence in prison custody.


The case was prosecuted by Senior Deputy District Attorney John R. DeChaine. Thomas Quinn served as defense counsel.


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