Rhode Island Kidnapping Attorney

Under Rhode Island criminal law, Kidnapping may be found under Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-26-1.  This offense penalizes the conduct of restraining, taking away or transporting someone against his or her will.  Kidnapping is also often referred to as abduction. 

Legal Elements of Kidnapping

In order to be convicted of Kidnapping, there must exist strong evidence of the following legal elements:

  1. that the defendant, without lawful authority, forcibly or secretly confined or imprisoned the alleged victim against his or her will; or
  2. that the defendant forcibly seized, confined, inveigled or kidnapped the alleged victim with the intent to cause him or her to be secretly confined or imprisoned against his or her will.

For the purposes of this offense, “forcibly” means by force, physical or by power or compulsion.  A person is “confined or imprisoned” when his or her freedom of movement or liberty is restrained.  A person “inveigles” another through the act of deception in order to accomplish an evil purpose.

Furthermore, the confinement must have some independent significance from the commission of any other crime. That is, any movement of an alleged victim during the course of another crime cannot be punished as kidnapping unless such movement exceeds that necessary to facilitate the commission of the crime at hand.  

Potential Punishment if Convicted of Kidnapping in Rhode Island

Under Rhode Island criminal law, Kidnapping is a felony offense for which convicted offenders may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 20 years. This penalty may be found at Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-26-1.

Furthermore, if the kidnapping was of a child under the age 16 or if the kidnapping was committed with the intent to sexually assault or molest the child, the punishment increases severely.  A Kidnapping of a Child is also felony that is punishable by imprisonment for not less than 20 years and up to life.  This penalty may be found at Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-26-1.4.

What are Kidnapping Offenses?


Kidnapping is the criminal offense of restraining, taking away or transporting someone against their will. Kidnapping is also often referred to as abduction. Kidnapping is most commonly associated with missing children who are taken against their will by abductors.

However, kidnapping may be done to any other person regardless of the age, sex or other circumstances of the alleged victim.

Various motives may exist for kidnapping such as for ransom or financial reward or in furtherance of another crime whether directed toward to victim such as murder, robbery, assault, molestation, or otherwise, or directed towards a third party such as extortion or bribery.


Some Kidnapping Offenses We Defend:

  • Child Snatching (Kidnapping of a Child) Under Rhode Island criminal law, Child Snatching is a felony offense that involved intentionally removing or cause the removal of a child under age 18 for the purpose of denying another person’s right of custody to that child.  If convicted, a defendant faces imprisonment for a term not more than 2 years. This penalty may be found at Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-26-1.1.
  • Human Trafficking

If you have been charged with a kidnapping offense and need representation, contact the RI kidnapping defense attorneys at the Rhode Island Criminal Defense Law Office of John L. Calcagni III by email or call today at (401) 351-5100 to schedule a free consultation.