Middlesboro man arrested after DUI, kidnapping, and assault charges involving his employees
From WRIL -
On Saturday night October 30, 2022 Middlesboro Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson, assisted by Officers Jake Perry and Ryan Collins, performed a traffic stop on a 2013 Ram 3500 pickup truck on 15th street at 11:16pm.
In his citation, Sgt. Johnson states that 34-year-old Richard Ridings picked up one of his adult male employees under false pretenses while manifestly under the influence. Ridings then picked up another male individual, accused the man of stealing from him and threatened to “take him back to the towers on the mountain and leave his dead body there.” The man also stated that Ridings began choking him to the point that he couldn’t breath which left marks on his neck, all while continuing to threaten him.
The second man went on to say that Richard Ridings refused to let either man out of the vehicle for over an hour. He also said that when he (Victim 2) had the chance, he exited the truck in fear of his life and then fled on his bicycle which was in the back of the vehicle.
The first victim stated that he was also in fear of his life during the action and that Ridings threatened to “keep him for two days and that he would be a bloody mess or dead,” and was going to “shoot him in the face.” The man stated that Ridings struck him in the arm and he saw the second victim get assaulted. The same man was able to text a family member who was able to report the incident to Middlesboro Police giving their location.
Once Sgt. Johnson and the officers located the vehicle, they found Ridings and the first victim inside. The second victim was found at Middlesboro ARH Hospital.
Richard Ridings was charged with kidnapping – adult – 1st degree, unlawful imprisonment, strangulation – 1st degree, (2) two counts of assault – 4th degree, operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol – 1st degree, possession of open alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle, and terroristic threatening – 3rd degree.