Bath, New York resident Billie Jo Ribble has pleaded guilty to kidnapping a woman and her infant daughter in 2013. On Wednesday Ribble entered her plea in U.S. District Court after the completion of a collaborative investigation by Steuben County sheriff’s deputies, special agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and New York and Pennsylvania police departments.
Ribble was arrested in March of last year in Mansfield on charges related to a burglary in 2012. Upon her arrest, Ribble, seven months pregnant, complained of stomach pains and was transferred to a hospital in Wellsboro, Pa.
While admitted to the hospital, the suspect assaulted a Tioga County sheriff’s deputy assigned to guard her. She then escaped through a third-story window onto a second-story roof. That evening, she sought refuge in the basement of a Wellsboro home where a mother was asleep with her infant in a crib nearby. The woman awoke to the sight of Ribble standing over the crib with a butcher’s knife in her hand.
Ribble retrieved the child from the crib and made a threat to kill both mother and child if the mother did not drive her to a destination. The woman took her place behind the driver’s seat while Ribble held the baby at knifepoint in the passenger seat. As directed, the woman drove from Pennsylvania to New York. The three headed to an exit off Route 15 in Lindley, where Ribble exited the vehicle. Police were called by the victim from a nearby gas station.
Corning police and Steuben County sheriff deputies eventually captured Ribble after a standoff at her boyfriend’s home on Decatur Street in Corning. Thirty-six-year-old Ribble faces a minimum of 20 years in prison and will be sentenced in June.
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