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Kidnapping defendant accused of witness tampering

ANADARKO  A 38-year-old Cache man hoping to have his bond reduced Wednesday for a trio of felony charges including a November kidnapping at gunpoint instead received a state's motion to increase bond and an added charge of attempting to prevent a witness from testifying.

Joshua Lee Wertz appeared Wednesday morning before District Judge David A. Stephens in Caddo County District Court for a bond reduction hearing, records indicate. He has been in Caddo County jail on $150,000 bond since Nov. 13 when he was charged with felony counts of kidnapping, feloniously pointing a firearm and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, as well as a misdemeanor drug possession count. He faces up to 20 years in prison for the kidnapping charge and up to 10 years for the two firearms counts.

The Caddo County District Attorney's Office filed an additional charge against Wertz for attempting to prevent a witness from giving testimony, records indicate. He now faces an additional 10 years in prison.

Anadarko police arrested Wertz Nov. 9 after he was accused of kidnapping his girlfriend and firing a pistol while driving before he wrecked. After being taken into custody, a pill bottle containing Alprazolam was found on Wertz.

The woman told officers she and Wertz had been dating and she had been at his home in Cache when she said she was going to go stay at her sister's home in Anadarko. She called a relative to pick her up and, according to the affidavit, Wertz didn't like that. Shortly after she got to Anadarko around 3 p.m., Wertz arrived, so she went outside to talk. Wertz opened his door, grabbed his gun and held it against the relative's face, saying he "didn't want any problems," according to the court affidavit. When the relative went inside the house, Wertz told the girlfriend to get in his truck "or he was going to kill everyone that was there," the affidavit states. What followed was described as an out of control drive with Wertz shooting his gun out the window before the girlfriend was able to get it away and throw it out the window. She told police "she was in fear for her life because of him ... that he had threatened her multiple times that day and pointed the gun to her head on several occasions," the affidavit states.

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