New Mexico man pleads guilty in a kidnapping case

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) – A Deming man has pleaded guilty in a federal court to conspiracy, kidnapping and firearms charges.

Prosecutors say 30-year-old Jessie A. Hopper Jr. entered his plea Friday without a plea agreement.

Hopper and two co-defendants were arrested on a criminal complaint charging them with kidnapping and firearms charges.

Authorities say the three kidnapped a woman and her two young children in Hot Springs, Arkansas on May 8 and drove them to Deming.

Hopper allegedly handcuffed the woman and sexually assaulted her several times by gunpoint.

The three suspects were arrested May 10 by New Mexico State Police.

Hopper remains in custody pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.

Prosecutors say he’s facing up to life in prison plus a consecutive seven-year term for brandishing a firearm.

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