First of three defendants sentenced in elderly abduction case

By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers

TAYLOR — One of three men accused of kidnapping a 90-year-old man from a nursing home was sentenced Monday, while the other two defendants — a father and son — await a new trial in 2012.

Darrell Howard, 50, was sentenced last week by Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Carole F. Youngblood to 2.5 to 15 years in prison after pleading guilty last month to conspiracy to commit unlawful imprisonment and second degree vulnerable adult abuse.

Prosecutors said that on July 19, Howard, Alfred Khattar, 54, and his son, Ted Robert Tomes, 25, went to Regency Health Care, 12575 Telegraph, and signed out resident Floyd Pickrell, who suffers from dementia. Surveillance cameras showed the men boosting Pickrell over the wall. Pickrell was an occasional customer at a coffee shop owned by Khattar, and it was believed the three abducted the man they assumed was wealthy.

Pickrell was taken to an Ypsilanti hotel before police him three days later after a tip identified the missing man.

Khattar and Tomes were on trial last month, charged with unlawful imprisonment, a 15-year felony, and vulnerable adult abuse. Attorneys for Khattar and Tomes argued that the two were removing Pickrell from the residence at the elderly man’s request.

Last month, the two faced a trial which resulted in a hung jury. Judge Youngblood ordered a new trial to begin Jan. 24, 2012.

(James Mitchell can be reached at jmitchell@bewickpublications.com.)

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