Judge orders kidnap, sexual assault suspect to remain in custody

BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) A federal court magistrate says the man charged with kidnapping a woman and her 5-year-old son in New Hampshire and later sexually assaulting the woman in Vermont must stay in custody.

Tuesday, Everett Simpson appeared before a federal judge. The hearing only focused on the kidnapping.

Police say in January, Simpson left a drug treatment center in Bradford and drove to Manchester, New Hampshire, where he allegedly kidnapped the New Hampshire mom and her 5-year-old son, and brought them back to Vermont. Kidnapping across state lines is a federal offense.

Investigators say once they were in Vermont, Simpson also sexually assaulted the woman. Vermont prosecutors say additional charges are coming related to that part of the alleged crime spree.

Police say Simpson picked the mother and child at random that Saturday in the parking lot at the Mall of America. He allegedly made the woman drive to Vermont and then sexually assaulted her in a White River Junction hotel in front of her young son.

Then, Simpson allegedly fled to Pennsylvania, where he was eventually caught after a car chase with police.

In federal court Tuesday, Judge John Conroy ordered Simpson to remain in custody, agreeing with prosecutors that there is no way to protect the public if Simpson is released.

Simpson did not enter a plea to the kidnapping charge. That will happen at a later date after the formal indictment is handed down.

Prosecutors say charges connected to the alleged sexual assault will likely come after the federal case plays out. The timeline for that isn't clear but it's important to note that if convicted on the kidnapping charge, Simpson faces the possibility of life behind bars.