Man gets 25 years for holding his ex hostage in Southern Oregon
A Northern California man will serve more than two decades in federal prison for a three-day armed kidnapping that started with three victims in Humboldt County, and culminated with him holding a single victim hostage in a densely wooded area outside Talent.
George Gene Rose, 45, was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Medford to 25 years in prison for confronting his former romantic partner and two others with a shotgun at a Humboldt County home in the summer of 2020.
He then forced the victims to ride with him in a stolen pickup, and over the course of three days stranded two of the victims in a remote area and threatened his ex with a murder-suicide following days in the mountains without food and water.
Rose’s former partner had rented a room in rural Humboldt County after their relationship ended, according to a sentencing brief filed by the U.S. Attorney’s office in the case.
On Aug. 3, 2020, while the woman was at work, Rose reportedly broke into her home, stole a shotgun belonging to the landlord and waited upstairs.
That afternoon, the woman came home with her 60-year-old roommate. At gunpoint, Rose ordered the two and a third adult inside the home on the ground. The three were bound with their hands and feet together behind their backs and their mouths taped shut, according to the sentencing brief filed May 11 by Assistant U.S. Attorney John C. Brassel.
When one of the victims tried to break free, Rose hit the victim in the head with the butt of the shotgun.
Rose forced the three hostages into a stolen Ford F-250 pickup and fled on a Northern California back road later that day.
Hours later, when one of the victims started losing consciousness, Rose freed two hostages. Federal prosecutors say the victims were left approximately two miles from the nearest house and had to walk to find help.
Rose continued north with his former partner into Southern Oregon and ditched the truck near Talent. Together on foot, Rose “repeatedly threatened to kill (her) and then himself, or get into a shootout with police,” according to the sentencing brief.
About three days after the ordeal began, Rose allowed his ex to knock on the door of a nearby residence for help and to negotiate Rose’s surrender with police.
Law enforcement agencies, including the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, reportedly seized a Mossberg shotgun from Rose and more than two-dozen shells.
Rose has prior felony convictions related to kidnapping and false imprisonment, according to Brassel.
In 1995, Rose reportedly attempted to get a six-figure ransom by calling a parent while two juveniles were missing and saying, “This is nobody. I’ve got your daughter and [a second victim]. Place $200,000 in a black plastic bag at the railroad station at Hop Bottom or you’ll never see them again.”
After he got out of prison, Brassel’s sentencing brief states, Rose received another 11-1/2 year prison sentence for breaking into a residence in 1998 and falsely imprisoning another victim with a firearm, and he “subsequently discharged that firearm at an occupied vehicle.”
Rose pleaded guilty in September to felony counts of kidnapping and felon in possession of a firearm, and was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court to 300 months — 25 years — in federal prison.
As terms of the plea agreement, the 25-year sentence also wraps up charges filed in Humboldt County against Rose that include counts of kidnapping, assault with a firearm, first-degree residential burglary and vehicle theft. Had Rose been handed a sentence below 300 months, the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office would have sought a separate four-year prison sentence.
Reach web editor Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @MTwebeditor.