Alleged abductors’ bond set at $3 million

Creve Coeur reviews school bus stop safety

Kevin Dishman
Scott Lindholm

September 10, 2004

By ANDY KRAVETZ
of the Journal Star

PEORIA – After a night of drinking and using drugs, two Peoria men set
out for East Peoria and Creve Coeur on Tuesday, looking for a woman – any
woman – to abduct, said Peoria County’s top prosecutor.

At 7:20 a.m., Kevin E. Dish- man and Scott L. Lindholm found their
victim, an 11- year-old Creve Coeur girl who was waiting for a school bus.

Dishman allegedly grabbed her by her bookbag and hauled her into their
van; Lindholm then drove off with the girl inside. The pair allegedly
sexually assaulted her several times throughout the day before the girl
escaped.

On Thursday, Peoria County State’s Attorney Kevin Lyons said Dishman and
Lindholm’s actions were the “crime of outrage of the year.” Circuit Judge
Stephen Kouri ordered each man held on $3 million bond.

Both are charged with two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of
a child, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and aggravated
kidnapping. All are Class X felonies and could potentially land the men
in prison for up to 60 years.

“There’s a special place in hell for people like this,” Lyons said after
the hearing.

Dishman, 37, of 619 Fairholm Ave. and Lindholm, 22, of 606 Fairholm Ave.,
who participated in the hearing through videoconferencing, appeared
disheveled and morose.

Both answered Kouri’s questions with short, terse answers. They will next
appear in court Oct. 7 for a preliminary hearing, though it’s likely the
case will brought before a grand jury before then.

During the bond hearing, Lyons recounted the events of that long day,
starting with the pair drinking at the Adam’s Apple bar in Downtown
Peoria and ending with them being captured by police about 10 p.m. in a
remote, wooded area near Keystone Steel & Wire Co. in Bartonville.

Based upon a videotaped statement given by Lindholm after his arrest, the
kidnapping was set into motion the night before, Lyons said in open
court. The pair decided after a night of booze, marijuana and cocaine
that they wanted to find a random woman and abduct her.

Age, it appears from Lyons’s statements, didn’t matter.

“It was entirely random,” Lyons said, noting there was no relationship
between the alleged abductors and the girl’s family.

The pair snatched the girl as she was waiting for her school bus at
Stewart and Groveland streets, and then drove her to Bartonville, where
by the girl’s and Lindholm’s accounts, the pair allegedly sexually
assaulted her four to five times each over several hours, Lyons said.

The prosecutor said the pair even dozed off, trapping the little girl
between them in such a manner that her movement would awaken them. A few
hours later, they awoke and sexually assaulted the girl again.

The child made her escape when the two men stepped out of the van to go
to the bathroom.

“In her estimation, she did not stop running for about 40 minutes. It was
dark but she could eventually see lights and thought she could be OK if
she could get to the lights,” Lyons said.

She was found by Keystone security, who alerted police. The girl then led
officers back to her abductors, who were found passed out in the van,
Lyons said.

To help prevent another child abduction, teachers this week at Creve
Coeur School District 76 advised students to be aware of their
surroundings, Superintendent Jack Wilt said. They also were given
suggestions on what to do if they are ever in a situation with a stranger.

Wilt hopes to implement a new safety program next fall.

For now, though, classroom discussions are all that the district can
provide to its students, Wilt said, adding it can’t afford to put an
adult at each bus stop to monitor students’ safety.

Wilt plans to meet with Creve Coeur Police Chief Mike Button next week to
mull over possibilities of increasing safety at bus stops.

According to Peoria County Circuit Court records, this case is Lindholm’s
first contact with the judicial system. Dishman has a few past drug
convictions, but no felonies.

Lyons said the little girl was doing as well as could be expected, given
the circumstances. He also praised her courage and bravery, noting she
remembered everything in such detail, down to the types of signs that
were in the back of the alleged abductors’ van.

“These two men, with evil on their minds, were caught due to the heroic
acts of a little girl,” he said.

Reporter Leslie Williams of the Journal Star contributed to this story.

Copyright 2004 Journal Star

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