KIDNAPPING, ABDUCTION, and UNLAWFUL RESTRAINT are serious offenses that involve one common theme: restraining someone’s liberty; in other words, preventing them from leaving or moving from an area.


KIDNAPPING occurs when a person, by force, threat, or deception removes another person from the place where the other person is found or restrains the liberty of the other person, for any of these reasons:

  • Holding the person for ransom, or as a shield or hostage;
  • Facilitating the commission of any felony or flight thereafter;
  • Terrorizing inflict serious physical harm on the victim or another;
  • Engaging in sexual activity with the victim against the victim's will;
  • Hindering, impeding, or obstructing a function of government, or force any action or concession on the part of governmental authority;
  • Holding in a condition of involuntary servitude.

KIDNAPPING possible penalties:

  • F1 (felony of the first degree)
  • F2 (felony of the second degree)


ABDUCTION is a lesser offense of KIDNAPPING. A person commits ABDUCTION by knowingly:

  • Holding another in a condition of involuntary servitude;
  • Restraining the liberty of another person under circumstances that create a risk of physical harm to the victim or place the other person in fear; 
  • Removing another from the place where the other person is found.

ABDUCTION possible penalties:

  • F2 (felony of the second degree)
  • F3 (felony of the third degree)


UNLAWFUL RESTRAINT is the least serious offense involving the restraint of someone’s liberty. A person commits UNLAWFUL RESTRAINT by knowingly restraining another person's liberty.

UNLAWFUL RESTRAINT possible penalties:

  • M3 (misdemeanor of the third degree)


Contact The Stavroff Law Firm today to learn about your rights and begin building your defense.