Judge binds majority of kidnapping and extortion counts

January Pinkard.

A Garfield County judge on Thursday determined there was enough evidence for all felony charges to be brought to trial against a man accused of breaking into a Silt foster home for help of a handgun in 2020.

“I think there was enough evidence at this point,” Lynch said.

January Pinkard, 36, is accused of breaking into a foster home in Silt with a handgun on December 20, court records show. Her stated motivation was to find a safe containing “child pornography” relating to her 3-year-old daughter. No child pornography was found.

The mother of Pinkard’s daughter – Annette Kapurkiewicz – was living in the house at the time.

Pinkard allegedly grabbed Kapurkiewicz and pointed the gun at her as he swept inside. At that moment, a roommate came out of an adjoining bedroom and entered the living room.

Pinkard ultimately threatened to kill anyone in the room if he told anyone, according to court documents.

Pinkard was arrested the next day. But during the booking process, Garfield County MPs discovered a combined total of 33 grams of methamphetamine and methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA).

Pinkard is charged with a number of felonies, including threatening, first-degree burglary, first-degree kidnapping with criminal intent, and possession of a weapon and intimidation of a victim, among other counts.

In addition, Pinkard is charged with violating a protection order, child abuse and harassment.

During Pinkard’s incarceration at Garfield County Jail, a search of his jail cell on May 7 revealed a plastic water bottle suspected of containing fermented liquid.

During Thursday’s testimony, Silt Police Chief Mike Kite, who was sent to the foster home after Pinkard left, testified that Kapurkiewicz told him in a follow-up witness statement that Pinkard found and held his 3-year-old daughter in his arms after he forcibly entered the house.

After Pinkard asked to see the safe and Kapurkiewicz led him to a room in the back to open what she called a ‘safe’ and no child pornography was found, Pinkard started asking his daughter questions.

According to public defender Scott Troxell, Pinkard asked his daughter if she had been “touched by someone”. Pinkard’s daughter said Kapurkeiwicz didn’t touch her.

Pinkard insisted, asking her daughter who touched her.

“And her daughter’s response was, ‘The bad guys,’ right? Troxell asked Kite, who was at the bar.

“Right,” Kite replied.

Troxell later argued that Pinkard’s kidnapping and extortion counts were dropped since Kapurkeiwicz was not coerced by Pinkard against her will.

“The testimony we heard today from Chief Kite is that Ms. Kapurkeiwicz herself indicated that she was not coerced, that she, in response to Mr. Pinkard requesting a safe, indicated that she had a safe in the room, that she went to the safe room and that Mr. Pinkard followed her, ”Troxell said. “I certainly don’t think this constitutes a charge of kidnapping.”

Troxell said the extortion charge as written – Pinkard intending to force Kapurkeiwicz against his will – is unclear and is not based on facts.

In response, Assistant District Attorney Ben Sollars said Kapurkeiwicz was simply trying to get Pinkard, who was found to be in possession of a .38 Derringer, out of his house as quickly as possible.

“During this interaction, he points a gun at his head,” Sollars said.

Pinkard’s next appearance is scheduled for October 21 at 10:30 a.m.

Journalist Ray K. Erku can be reached at 612-423-5273 or [email protected]

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