BALLSTON SPA, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Accused kidnapper Craig Ross Jr. pleaded not guilty to nine total charges during an arraignment Friday in Saratoga County Court. Ross is accused of kidnapping a young girl in late September.
Ross was arraigned on Friday on a nine-count indictment handed up by a grand jury. Ross is accused of kidnapping a girl at a campsite in Moreau Lake State Park in late September. The charges include:
- First-degree kidnapping
- Four sexual assault charges
- Two sexual abuse charges
- Endangering the welfare of a child
The search for the girl prompted an Amber Alert over two days, until police found her inside a trailer on Ross’ mother’s property. Police traced a ransom note allegedly left at the girl’s home to Ross through a fingerprint from a 1999 DWI.
“The first count of the indictment alleges he abducted another person and his intent was to compel a third person to pay or deliver money or property as ransom,” said Saratoga County District Attorney Karen Heggen.
Heggen said that the investigation remains ongoing and that her priority is justice for the girl and her family. “We will do it thoroughly and completely because of the work that has been done and the work that continues to be done by law enforcement to hold this defendant, who has committed a heinous terrible offense against a tender-aged victim, we will hold him accountable and responsible,” she said.
If convicted, Ross could see consecutive sentences for all of these charges, including 25 years to life in prison for kidnapping. He was remanded to Saratoga County Jail without bail. The next court date is set for Thursday, December 21.