Wednesday, January 8, 2014


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Man arrested after holding his family captive for a week

CALLICOON CENTER – A Callicoon Center man is in the Sullivan County Jail in lieu of $5,000 bail after he held his two children, ages 11 and 12, and their mother, captive in their house since New Year’s Eve.

On Monday, January 6, the Sullivan County Probation Department received a tip that a man who was on probation may be armed and holding his family captive at 673 Hessinger Lare Road in Callicoon Center.  Sullivan County Sheriff’s deputies and probation officers went to the address and found Benito Lopez, 40, highly intoxicated.

Lopez, who was on probation for felony DWI, had been holding the family in the house for almost a week.

Deputies found that Lopez had taken all electronic devices, the car keys and disconnected the telephone in order to prevent them from calling for help or leaving.  The family members were allowed to use the Internet, and unbeknownst to Lopez, his girlfriend was able to send a message on Facebook to alert a relative.

Deputies found no weapons at the scene but did find 15 cases of empty beer cans.

Lopez was charged with three counts of unlawful imprisonment and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.  He was also charged by probation officers with violating the terms of his probation.