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Press Release

Oklahoman gets more than 37 years for kidnapping estranged wife by gunpoint

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A 32-year-old resident of Yukon, Oklahoma, has been ordered to federal prison after his conviction of kidnapping and brandishing a firearm during the crime, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

The federal jury sitting in Corpus Christi deliberated for approximately three hours before convicting Joshua Anthony Wallin June 29 on both counts following a four-day trial.

U.S. District Judge David S. Morales has now ordered Wallin to serve 365 months in federal prison for the kidnapping charge to be immediately followed by 84 months for brandishing a firearm which must be served consecutively to the other term imposed. The total 449-month-term will be immediately followed by five years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay the victim restitution. Before sentencing, Judge Morales took exception to Wallin’s statement that no one had been hurt. In imposing the prison term, the court into account all the pain Wallin caused to the victim and her family.

In the early morning hours of June 23, 2021, Wallin confronted his estranged wife at her home in Crescent, Oklahoma, holding her at gunpoint and subjecting her to a two-day ordeal. The jury heard how he took her and their one-year-old son on an arduous journey that culminated at a Corpus Christi restaurant.

The victim provided testimony describing her fear and how she was sexually assaulted before they left Oklahoma and again along the way. She also told the jury that at one point during the trip, Wallin said “at the end of the day someone is going to die.”  

As they traveled though Texas, Wallin was aware of law enforcement, called 911 and began a series of conversations with them. He repeatedly made threatening statements about killing his wife and child, telling authorities they should not get too close. His driving became erratic, and law enforcement was able to use a tire deflation device to flatten a rear tire. He eventually crashed into a local restaurant.

They eventually arrived in Corpus Christi, at which time Wallin grabbed his son from the mother’s arms and carried him into the restaurant while pointing a gun at his son’s head. Upon entry, Wallin fired one shot into the ceiling and ordered the occupants out of the restaurant.

A two-hour stand-off then ensued. Wallin did speak with negotiators, but became increasingly agitated. As authorities gained entry, Wallin shot himself. The child was unharmed. Wallin recovered from his self-inflicted wound.

At trial, testimony revealed Wallin had performed internet searches on his phone the day before the kidnapping in an attempt to locate his estranged wife and to learn how people react when kidnapped.

The defense attempted to convince the jury that Wallin and the victim were on a vacation when things went horribly wrong. The jury did not believe those claims and found Wallin guilty as charged.

Wallin has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The Corpus Christi Police Department and FBI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Hess and Ashley Martin prosecuted the case.

Updated September 21, 2023

Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime