New Hampshire drops case after Maine charges parents with kidnapping daughter, 19, to force abortion

Tuesday, September 26th 2006, 10:18 pm
By: News On 6

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) _ A couple accused of tying up their pregnant daughter and driving out of state in the hopes of forcing her to undergo an abortion will only face charges back home in Maine after prosecutors on Tuesday dropped their case in New Hampshire where they were arrested.

Maine prosecutors filed kidnapping charges against Nicholas and Lola Kampf on Monday.

``While both states could prosecute for the offenses, it is not always efficient and effective to prosecute in both jurisdictions,'' said Jim Reams, attorney for Rockingham County, N.H.

The Kampfs are accused of attacking their 19-year-old daughter, Katelyn, outside their home in North Yarmouth on Sept. 15, forcing her in the car and driving toward New York, where investigators believe the couple hoped to get her an abortion.

Katelyn, who said her parents threatened to kill her and themselves, escaped at a shopping center in Salem, N.H., and called police on a cell phone, authorities said. Police said they found a .22-caliber rifle, duct tape and rope in the Kampfs' Lexus.

Her parents were charged with kidnapping and jailed in New Hampshire for several days before posting bail.

Katelyn Kampf's lawyer declined to elaborate the incident.

``She has made known her position of what happened to law enforcement and she just wants the criminal process to see its way through so they can be punished for what they have done,'' said lawyer Sarah Churchill.

In Maine, the Kampfs were freed after posting $100,000 cash bail apiece. They are barred from contacting their daughter and from leaving the state. They also were forced to surrender their passports.

The couple's attorney, Thomas Hallett, told the Portland Press Herald that Katelyn Kampf was an ``emotionally immature and volatile child'' who ``lashed out'' at her parents when they tried to help her.

Hallett said the parents told him that they and their daughter ``were on the same page when it came to abortion'' and that Katelyn Kampf even suggested a place where she could obtain an abortion in Massachusetts. He did not return a call to The Associated Press seeking additional comment on Tuesday.

The Kampfs, wealthy real estate developers, face up to 30 years in prison on the Maine charges, double the maximum in New Hampshire. But Cumberland County (Maine) District Attorney Stephanie Anderson said she won't seek anywhere near the maximum sentence.

Anderson said she thought the couple might have been motivated by concern about Katelyn's boyfriend, Reme Johnson, 22, who is serving a six-month jail sentence for theft. Katelyn says he is the baby's father.

Katelyn Kampf's lawyer sought to play down the role of race in the incident. The parents' biggest concerns about Katelyn and her pregnancy, not her boyfriend, Churchill said.

``I wouldn't say it wasn't a factor at all, but I wouldn't say it was the primary motivating factor for what occurred,'' she said.