HOUSTON – 11/21/17 – A 30-year-old Houston man is set to appear in federal court on charges of kidnapping of an employee with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), announced Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez. The victim was later found deceased.
A criminal complaint was filed under seal Nov. 20, 2017, charging Don Gaines, 30, with kidnapping. Federal authorities arrested him today, at which time the complaint was unsealed. He is expected to appear before U.S. Magistrate Judge Frances Stacy at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow.
The charges allege that Gaines did unlawfully seize, confine, kidnap, abduct and carry away the victim without her consent from Texas to Louisiana for the purpose of killing her or disposing of her body. The victim had been reported missing after she had not shown up for work for two days.
According to the criminal complaint, Gaines worked at the same location as the victim at the time of the alleged crime and was the father of her two children.
On or about Sept. 11, 2017, Gaines allegedly choked the victim in her car and he believed she was dead. However, while transporting her, the woman regained consciousness, according to the charges. Gaines allegedly continued to transport her against her will. The criminal complaint alleges that during the trip, Gaines stopped the car along the feeder road of Interstate 10, took the victim into the woods where he shot her in the head and abandoned her body.
If convicted, Gaines could potentially face the death penalty.
The U.S. Postal Inspection Service conducted the investigation along with the Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, and Harris County Sheriff’s Offices; Louisiana State University; Louisiana State Police and the Houston Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys John Jocher and Jim McAlister are prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.
Video source: ABC Houston
See original PEN article here