How to Propose: First, No Kidnapping

Romantic getaway doesn't go as planned for alleged kidnapper
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 12, 2015 12:34 PM CST

(Newser) – Picture it: Your ex-boyfriend kidnaps you at BB-gun-point, handcuffs you, and drives you from Texas to a bed and breakfast in Kansas, where he plans to spend three weeks with you on a passionate getaway that ends with him convincing you to marry him. If that doesn't sound like the perfect proposal to you, well, a woman identified as HMM in court documents didn't find it all that romantic either. She and Joseph Andrew DeRusse, 24, dated for just two months when things started "cooling down" between them in November, Courthouse News reports, citing court documents. They hadn't seen each other since just after Christmas when on Jan. 22 DeRusse allegedly kidnapped HMM at her sister's Austin apartment complex, forcing her into a car with a BB gun he'd made to look real; police described it as "very realistic," KXAN reports.

During their three-state trek, DeRusse not only allegedly handcuffed HMM but also set her up with a neck pillow and a sleep mask so that she would look like a willing passenger in his car simply taking a nap, and didn't remove them for 400 miles. HMM's father reported his daughter and her car missing, and her GPS revealed that the car was in Kansas. Police stopped DeRusse on Jan. 23 before he reached the B&B, and he told officers HMM was his "fiancee" and they were driving her car. During a private conversation with an officer, though, she revealed what really happened. DeRusse eventually confessed and told officers about his proposal plan; they found an engagement ring in the car. He was arrested and has been charged with kidnapping in federal court; he faces life in prison. (This proposal also went very, very wrong.)

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