Kidnapper who brutalized, ransomed woman gets convictions reduced but sentence stands

A man convicted in a violent kidnapping scheme successfully had two of his felony convictions overturned on double jeopardy grounds, though the Indiana Court of Appeals declined on Tuesday to find an abuse of discretion in the consecutive sentences he received.

In Irving Madden v. State of Indiana, 20A-CR-196, Quantavious Jones told his girlfriend A.C. in October 2018 that he was going to send her a package. When A.C. had not received the package the next day, Jones picked her up and located the UPS driver, who said the package had been delivered.

Jones then took A.C.’s phone and called Madden, who was either a friend or a relative. Jones informed Madden that A.C. had lost the package and said they were coming to Madden’s house.

A.C. then “realize[d] something’s up” and tried to get out of the car, but Jones grabbed her shirt and restrained her. She tried to stay in the car once they arrived at Madden’s home, but Madden pulled her from the car and took her to the basement, where she was handcuffed to a pipe.

A.C. was able to free herself and tried to grab a phone sitting in front of her, but Jones began “choking [her] to the ground.” She was then handcuffed to a chair, scalded and repeatedly brutalized to the point that she began to lose consciousness. Meanwhile, Jones used A.C.’s phone to ask people about the missing package.

The trio then returned upstairs, where A.C. was allowed to call her family and ask for $3,000 for her freedom. One of her cousins had added a detective to the call, but A.C. was unable to share her location with the detective because Jones hung up the phone.

The trio then got in the car, and Madden, who was driving, dropped A.C. off in an unfamiliar neighborhood, where a stranger called her cousin. When her cousin arrived, A.C. went to the hospital and underwent several surgeries and rehabilitative therapy. She has permanent scarring.

Later, at a joint trial for Madden and Jones, Madden was convicted of two counts of Level 3 felony aggravated battery, Level 5 felony kidnapping with bodily injury, and Level 2 felony counts of kidnapping for ransom and criminal confinement with intent to ransom. The Marion Superior Court sentenced him to an aggregate 40 years in the Department of Correction, including 10 years on each battery conviction to run consecutively, 20 years for each Level 2 felony conviction to run concurrently to each other but consecutively to the battery sentences, and four years for the Level 5 felony to run concurrently to all other sentences.

On appeal, Madden first challenged his conviction of Level 2 felony kidnapping for ransom. Though Madden himself did not make the ransom demand, the Court of Appeals upheld that conviction, determining that he “actively participated in A.C.’s kidnapping for ransom.”

However, the COA vacated Madden’s convictions of Level 5 felony kidnapping and Level 2 felony criminal confinement on double jeopardy grounds.

Madden was charged with two violations of Indiana Code § 35-41-3-2(a), which defines kidnapping as “knowingly or intentionally remov(ing) another person, by fraud, enticement, force, or threat of force, from one place to another … .” One of those violations resulted in the Level 5 felony charge, and the other was a Level 2 felony.

Under the newly established analysis in Powell v. State, 151 N.E.3d 256 (Ind. 2020) — which was applied in a COA ruling as to Jones — Judge Margret Robb wrote that “there is no question that only one removal occurred: Madden’s forceful removal of A.C. from Jones’ car into the basement.”

“‘The only things that distinguish the Level [5] conviction (injury) from the Level [2] conviction (ransom) are result and motive. These are not the units of prosecution for kidnapping,’” Robb wrote, quoting Jones’ case. “Therefore, only one can stand, which, in this case is the Level 2 felony. … We remand to the trial court with instructions to vacate Madden’s Level 5 felony kidnapping conviction and amend its judgment to remove the conviction and sentence on this count.”

Then, under the new analysis in Wadle v. State, 151 N.E.3d 227 (Ind. 2020), Madden and the state agreed that both his Level 2 kidnapping and criminal confinement convictions cannot stand, vacating the criminal confinement conviction.

“Here, the same facts proved Madden’s conviction for criminal confinement and kidnapping — that he forced A.C. from the car and into the basement where she was handcuffed. And because Madden acted with the intent to obtain ransom, both convictions were enhanced to Level 2 felonies. Madden’s actions were so compressed in time, place, singleness of purpose, and continuity of action that his convictions for both crimes violate double jeopardy,” Robb wrote.

His double jeopardy arguments as to his two convictions of aggravated battery, however, failed because his two acts of throwing hot water on A.C. were not continuous, thus not constituting a single transaction.

“In sum, Madden’s two aggravated battery convictions do not constitution double jeopardy and are therefore affirmed,” the judge wrote. “Madden’s Level 5 felony kidnapping and criminal confinement convictions do constitute double jeopardy in relation to his Level 2 felony kidnapping convictions. Therefore, his convictions for Level 5 felony kidnapping and criminal confinement must be vacated and his conviction for Level 2 felony kidnapping is affirmed.”

Finally, the COA upheld Madden’s sentence, rejecting his arguments that his consecutive sentences were an abuse of discretion and that his sentence was inappropriate.

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