Wednesday, November 21, 2001

Police charge former husband with kidnapping

By Janice Morse
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MONROE — Police filed a kidnapping charge Tuesday, accusing a man of abducting his former wife and holding her captive for eight days, much of the time in a makeshift New Hampshire campsite.

        Roland A. Larson, 59, of Southwick, Mass., also faces charges filed by New Hampshire State Police: two counts of kidnapping and a count of violating a restraining order.

        Monroe police said Mr. Larson was arrested Saturday after his ex-wife, Charlotte M. Larson, 50, of Middletown, was able to get away briefly and tell someone she had been kidnapped. Mr. Larson, described as a disabled veteran, is in jail in New Hampshire.

        Ms. Larson, who apparently suffered no significant physical harm, told police she was abducted from the parking lot of her workplace, Arkay Plastics Inc., around 4:30 a.m. Nov. 9.

        She has worked as a custodian there for four years.

        “As she was arriving at work, Mr. Larson pulled in front of her truck on a bicycle and told her that he had been shot and he needed help,” Police Chief Ernest Howard said.

        The ruse worked. Ms. Larson tlet him into the truck. Then, the chief said, Mr. Larson grabbed her and bound her with duct tape across her wrists, ankles, mouth and eyes. He drove her to a secluded, wooded area near the New Hampshire-Massachusetts border, where she remained for several days, police said.

        Meanwhile, her colleagues at Arkay Plastics were worried.

        “I knew something was wrong when I got here and the lights weren't on, the coffee wasn't on, and Charlotte wasn't here,” said Sandy Profitt, human resource manager at Arkay. “It's not like her to not be here and not call off.”

        After several hours passed, Ms. Profitt called Ms. Larson's home in Middletown. Her boyfriend, Robert Bowling, filed a missing-person report that day. He wouldn't talk to a reporter about the case Tuesday.

        Court and police records show Ms. Larson has been reporting harassment from Mr. Larson since 1996.

        On Feb. 6, a Butler County magistrate issued a protection order on her behalf. It was to remain in effect through Nov. 13, 2002.


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