Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Former BYU Student Stetson Hallam Pleads Guilty To Second-Degree Kidnapping And Obstruction Of Justice In American Fork, Utah
A former Brigham Young University student appeared in Fourth District Court in American Fork, Utah and pleaded guilty on Tuesday July 27th, 2010 to kidnapping for using a stun gun on a woman. Stetson Geo Hallam, 20, pleaded guilty to two second-degree felonies -- aggravated kidnapping and obstruction of justice. The kidnapping charge was lowered from a first-degree felony aggravated kidnapping in a plea deal, although no sentencing concessions were made as part of the deal.
Hallam faces a sentence from one to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine on each count when he is sentenced on September 7th. Had he been convicted on first degree felony aggravated kidnapping, he could have faced 15 years to life in prison. BYU campus authorities barred Hallam from the campus on April 12th. Because Hallam is LDS, he is likely to face church discipline now that he has pleaded guilty, if he hasn't already done so.
To recap the case, Stetson Hallam was the home teacher of the victim, who still remains publicly unidentified. However, Hallam had developed a romantic interest in the victim over a period of time; the victim did not return his interest. Hallam then repeatedly contacted the woman, telling her he had a gift for her. Hallam met the woman around 9:30 p.m. on April 6th and told her a roommate helped him prepare a scavenger hunt for the gift in the common laundry room. In the laundry room, police say, he told her to open a bin, which she reportedly described as 5 feet long by 2 feet wide and 3 feet tall, with a lockable lid and handles. When the woman opened the empty bin, Hallam pressed a stun gun to the woman's arm, and she fell to the ground, according to police. Hallam then pinned the woman down and put a handcuff on one of her arms. At the same time, he covered her mouth with his hand while she screamed and fought him, but she bit down on his finger until he got up and apologized, claiming it was an April Fool's joke. Additional details available in my previous posts from April 10th and April 16th.
It may have been intended to be a joke, but Hallam's not laughing now.