HILLSBOO — A co-defendant in a Greenfield kidnapping case pled guilty to abduction Friday morning in Highland County Common Pleas Court during proceedings initially intended to be a hearing on a motion for a mental competency evaluation.
Nathan Day, 26, Hillsboro, faces up to three years in prison after he pled guilty to one count of abduction, a third-degree felony, following discussion in court regarding his mental abilities.
Day’s attorney, Rich Federle, said he filed the motion for a competency evaluation after he received phone calls from Day’s family members, and even someone who said they were the alleged victim of the kidnapping, saying Day did not have the mental faculties to make his own decisions in court.
Federle said that while Day may have some learning disabilities, he did seem to comprehend the nature of his case, the function of the court and the possible penalties.
Judge Rocky Coss asked Day a number of questions during proceedings regarding his education and work history.
After the plea hearing was conducted, Coss ordered a pre-sentence investigation and lowered Day’s bond to $5,000.
As reported previously, Virgil Bryant, 53, Tina Bryant, 52, and Sabrina Banks, 23, all of Hillsboro, each pled guilty to one count of third-degree felony abduction in connection with the kidnapping of Tina Bryant’s daughter in October, according to court records.
One count of abduction for each of the four defendants was dropped as part of a plea agreement.
All four defendants face up to three years in prison, Coss said.
According to an affidavit filed in the case, law enforcement interviews with the victim and two women who were with her at the time of the abduction alleged that a group of masked individuals pulled into the old Pamida parking lot on Jefferson Street in Greenfield, where the three women were waiting for the victim to meet Tina Bryant.
The affidavit states the masked people used tasers and pepper spray as they took the victim and drove away with her. Both women identified Virgil and Tina Bryant as the kidnappers, according to the affidavit.
The victim, who was later found at a Dunn Road property, said Virgil Bryant held a gun to her head and Tina Bryant sprayed her with pepper spray during the kidnapping before taking her to the Dunn Road property owned by her uncle.
Banks and Day were also involved in the kidnapping, according to allegations in court records. All four were later arrested.
Coss said prison sentences for the Bryants and Banks are not mandatory, but assumed appropriate due to the nature of the charges. Pre-sentence investigations have been ordered in all four cases.
Sentencing hearings for the Bryants and Banks will be held in January. Day will be sentenced in February.
Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570, or on Twitter@DavidWrighter.