DEPRESSION MED: Fireman Holds Daughter’s Fiance at Gunpoint: New Jersey

Paragraph six reads:  “Humphrey takes
medication for migraines, depression
and ADD, and he had a migraine on the night of the offense,
Luther added.”

Hebron man gets probation for abduction

Columbus firefighter held daughter’s fiancé at gunpoint in August

BY JESSIE BALMERT • Advocate Reporter • September 24,

NEWARK — A Columbus firefighter from Hebron was sentenced to a
maximum of five years of community control Wednesday morning after pleading
guilty to driving his stepdaughter’s fiancé around town at gunpoint.

E. Humphrey, 53, last known address 7589 Lancaster Road, Hebron, pleaded guilty
to one count each of abduction, a third-degree felony; improperly handling
firearms in a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony; and domestic violence, a
first-degree misdemeanor. A three-year firearm specification was

Licking County Common Pleas Judge Jon Spahr also required
Humphrey to complete a mental health program, surrender all firearms and have no
contact with his stepdaughter’s fiancé. The maximum sentence Humphrey could have
faced for the charges was six years and six months in prison for the felony
charges served consecutively and six months in jail for the domestic violence

Licking County Assistant Prosecutor Dan Huston recommended
community control because that was the suggestion of law enforcement and the
victims. Humphrey had no previous felony offenses.

“My concern, your
honor, is the character that Mark presented on Aug. 20 is not who Mark is,” said
George Luther, Humphrey’s attorney.

Humphrey takes medication for
migraines, depression and ADD, and he had a migraine on the night of the
offense, Luther added.

On Aug. 20, 2008, Humphrey found his
stepdaughter’s fiancé in his home, awakened his wife with screams and threatened
her, his stepdaughter and her fiancé with a loaded .45-caliber handgun,
according to court documents.

Humphrey followed his wife and stepdaughter
into the bedroom, where he backhanded the stepdaughter, causing injury, court
documents said.

When the fiancé left the house, Humphrey pursued him and
threatened to burn down the home with the people inside, court documents

He then caught the fiancé and told him to get into his pickup
truck, in which he was keeping a handgun, according to court documents. Humphrey
and the man, whom he was holding at gunpoint, drove around until Humphrey was
arrested by Hebron police, according to court documents.

“The night was a
snowball of hysteria and confusion that resulted in many poor choices,” Luther

Humphrey, who has served as a Columbus firefighter for 21 years,
said he has been a law-abiding citizen for most of his life and would like to
return to being a productive resident of Licking County. Several family members
rely on Humphrey’s salary and health insurance to treat their illnesses,
including his stepdaughter’s child, who was born with birth defects, Luther

“He is so remorseful for that,” Luther said. “I just don’t see that
type of action repeating itself.”

Several Columbus firefighters, along
with his family, were in attendance to support Humphrey, who resupplies the tool
room for the fire department, Luther said. Humphrey’s job as a firefighter is in
jeopardy because of the conviction, Luther said.

Jessie Balmert can be
reached at (740) 328-8548 or

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