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Utahn charged with holding woman hostage 6 hours because she wouldn't marry him

Matheson Courthouse

(Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

WEST JORDAN — Criminal charges were filed Tuesday against a West Jordan man accused of kidnapping his girlfriend for six hours and threatening to kill her unless she married him.

Kolbe Lee James, 24, is charged in 3rd District Court with kidnapping, a second-degree felony, plus making a threat of violence, assault and electronic communication harassment, all class B misdemeanors.

On Friday, James picked up his girlfriend to look at an apartment to rent. But after looking at the apartment, James "became angry with the victim due to the victim's lack of commitment toward marriage," according to a police booking affidavit.

He then "held her against her will for approximately six hours while telling her that he was going to kill her," charging documents state. During that time, James is accused of making comments such as she was not free to leave unless she "made the right decision," that he would strangle her, and that he would be "an agent of the devil and make her life a living hell."

At one point, James hit the woman in the face after she tried to yell for help out the window, the charges state. She also kicked his windshield, causing it to break.

When the woman convinced James to finally take her back to her own car, she started to drive away but police say he followed her. The woman drove straight to the West Jordan Police Department. While speaking with officers, James called the woman's cellphone 55 times, according to the charges.

When questioned by police, James claimed he "blacked out" and couldn't remember everything that happened, the charges say.

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