Suspect Found Guilty in Botched Kidnapping and Ransom Plot


On April 18, 2011, Cleveland Police were at the scene of a botched kidnapping and ransom plot that led to one man being shot by officers.

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CLEVELAND — The fourth suspect connected to a kidnapping and ransom crime that took place in April of last year has been found guilty for his role in the crime.

According to Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason’s office, Duane Gibson, 40, of South Euclid, was found guilty of numerous crimes including three counts of murder, aggravated robbery, felonious assault and three counts of kidnapping.

The botched kidnapping took place on April 18, 2011, when Gibson and Jay Hillsman, 25, Ronald Brunson, 35, and Umar Clark, 20, all of Cleveland, snatched 58-year-old Lloyd Davis.

Davis was held at Gibson’s home on Herrick Road for 11 hours as the kidnappers tried to orchestrate a ransom payment from Davis’ family.

According to prosecutors, when police attempted to apprehend the suspects, they tried to flee in a car. A chase ensued through Cleveland and the Euclid Metroparks.

Gibson eventually crashed his car in a backyard on Darryl Avenue in South Euclid.

Gibson, Hillsman, and Brunson ran but were quickly apprehended.

Two hours later, police located the victim, who was being held by Clark and a fifth suspect, Leon James, 23, of Cleveland.

According to prosecutors, the two suspects drove their vehicle at police resulting in the officers firing at the car. James died as a result of the gun fire.

Gibson is set to be sentenced for his crimes on Thursday afternoon by Judge Hollie Gallagher.

The remaining suspects all previously pleaded guilty to crimes and await sentencing.

All the men face maximum prison sentences ranging from 20 to 35 years.

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