News and Press Releases

Two Mississippi Men and One Detroit Woman
Sentenced Following Federal Convictions for Kidnapping

May 2, 2012

Kedrick Brown, 29 and Gary Monson, 29, of Clinton and Jackson, Mississippi, were sentenced in federal district court on kidnapping and drug charges. Vanessa Conerly, 23, a co-defendant from Detroit and cousin of Kedrick Brown, was also sentenced following her guilty plea to accessory after the fact to a kidnapping, announced United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade.

Joining McQuade in the announcement was Andrew G. Arena, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Detroit.

Brown was sentenced to 180 months in federal prison, Monson to 164 months in federal prison and Conerly to 48 months. All three defendants will serve a multi-year term of supervision following their release from federal prison. The two pleaded guilty last January and were sentenced by the Honorable Nancy G. Edmunds yesterday and Monday.

Based on information provided to the court at sentencing, the evidence established that on August 14, 2010, Gary Monson and Kedrick Brown drove from Mississippi to a home in Detroit for the purpose of purchasing illegal codeine syrup. They had communicated about purchasing the contraband syrup from a contact they knew in Detroit. At that time, the Detroit contact was accompanied by a female friend who was an innocent bystander.

Kedrick Brown gave his Detroit contact money to purchase codeine syrup from a person inside a residence located on Evanston Street in Detroit . Kedrick Brown, Gary Monson and Brown's cousin, Vanessa Connerly, waited outside. When the Detroit contact entered the home to make the purchase, she was robbed by someone inside the house. When Kedrick Brown learned that his money had been taken, Brown grabbed the Detroit contact’s friend. Brown told the Detroit contact that her friend would be held until his money was returned. The victim struggled with Kedrick Brown but Brown was able to force her into Gary Monson's vehicle in the back seat with Conerly. Monson then drove away with the four of them in his car.

When the victim saw a passing police car and attempted to get help, Defendant Conerly stabbed her in the thigh with a knife. Gary Monson later dropped off Defendant Conerly at an unknown location after stopping at a Dollar Store to purchase duct tape. Gary Monson and Kedrick Brown, assisted by another unidentified male, taped the victim’s hands and feet. The victim also had a belt placed around her neck which would be pulled taut by Brown if she became non-compliant. She also had a black leather bag placed over her head until they were out of the state of Michigan.

En route to Mississippi, Monson and Brown communicated with the victim's mother and demanded repayment of the stolen drug money as ransom. The two also threatened the victim claiming that they would force the victim into prostitution until she earned the money back and threatened her with severe physical injury as well.

While the three were traveling through Kentucky, Monson and Brown received confirmation that the victim’s mother had sent $800 in ransom by Western Union to Brown's brother in Mississippi. Once they confirmed receipt of the ransom money, the let the victim out of the car at a gas station exit in Kentucky.

United States Attorney Barbara McQuade said: “We are gratified by the lengthy sentences imposed on these defendants after coming to Michigan and submitting an innocent woman to such brutal treatment. Kidnapping is a very serious crime that does not always end well, and we are committed to bringing to justice anyone who terrorizes a member of our community in this way.”

McQuade praised the work of the FBI for the dedicated effort that the case agents assigned to the case brought to the investigation and the tireless efforts that resulted in justice for a victim who was terrorized and injured. The law enforcement officers involved at both the state level in Kentucky and federal level in Detroit demonstrated the highest levels of professionalism in their diligent and thorough investigation of the case.

Assistant United States Attorneys John O'Brien and Jeanine Brunson prosecuted the case for the United States.











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