A-1 Outlaw Bonding owner, agents arrested

Published 4:11 am Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A Pearl River County bonding company owner and her employees have all been arrested for their alleged part in a rash of alleged incidents of armed robberies and kidnappings that is reported to have been going on for years.

The incidents appeared to have been an attempt to collect on unpaid bonds, but the alleged illegal manner in which the money was collected prompted action from the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department.

Chief Investigator Donnie Saucier said further investigation into the claims provided evidence that the owner of the company, 48 year-old Anita Carol Pearson, had instructed her agents to conduct the alleged illegal activities.

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“Specifically they were going out and kidnapping and robbing clients and claiming the profits of the robberies were payment for services,” Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said.

Initial investigation into the charges began in December after a victim claimed he was picked up at gunpoint by agents of the bonding company and robbed of his cash and a silver necklace.

That first complaint in December led to the arrests of A-1 Outlaw Bonding agents 28 year-old Elisha Shere Bourgeouis and 27 year-old Kenneth D. Maynard for armed robbery. After those arrests, sheriff’s department investigators began checking into four new complaints, Saucier said.

“Through the investigation we learned that the employees’ activity was at the direction of Carol Pearson, who is the owner of A-1 Outlaw Bonding,” Tucker said.

After that story ran in the Item, Saucier said four more victims stepped up claiming similar actions by the same bonding company had befallen them.

The four additional victims shared similar stories of being kidnapped, at times with the use of a weapon, handcuffed and robbed of money and belongings, Saucier said. He said the money was taken under the ruse that it was to pay for the debt the victim owed to the bonding company.

Typical procedure when a person out on bond owes money to a bonding company involves simply finding that person and bringing them to jail, effectively surrendering the original bond, Tucker said. The proper way to get the bond money back would be to then file a civil case with Justice Court, he said.

In the cases investigated, the victims were never brought to the jail. At times they were dropped off on the side of the road.

After interviews with the other four victims and gathering evidence, investigators had enough probable cause to secure a search warrant for the business. The search was conducted in early January. Pearson filed a notice of motion hearing shortly afterward claiming that the Sheriff’s Department did not have a warrant to do the search and did it in an unlawful manner by taking records from the separate company also housed in the same building by the name of A Outlaw Bonding. Her court filing states A Outlaw Bonding is a separately owned company.

That motion was not taken up by the Pearl River County Circuit Court, Circuit Clerk Vickie Harriel said.

Information seized in the search will be used to further the investigation of the case, Saucier said.

Since her arrest, Pearson was bonded out by A Outlaw Bonding for a $21,500 bond, for eight violent offense charges.

District Attorney Hal Kittrell said the evidence gathered in this case was presented to assistant district attorneys, who provided the investigators with information to file the proper charges.

As a result of the investigation, Anita Carol Pearson, 48, of 13000 George St., was charged with accessory before the fact kidnapping, felony conspiracy to commit extortion, felony extortion, conspiracy to commit grand robbery, accessory before the fact armed robbery, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, misdemeanor extortion and accessory before the fact felony extortion.

Sean Robert Bourgeois, 31, 1107 Blackwell Lane was charged with conspiracy to commit robbery and robbery.

Edward Leroy Johnson Jr., 34, of 34 McCormick Lane was charged with kidnapping, misdemeanor extortion and conspiracy to commit kidnapping.

Mack Pearson, 50, 32 Broadway Circle, was charged with misdemeanor extortion and kidnapping.

Kenneth D. Maynard, 27, 1326 McNeill Henleyfield Rd., was charged with kidnapping, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, conspiracy to commit armed robbery, and also arrested in December for armed robbery stemming from the same investigation.

Kevin C. Spiers, 29, 1090 Bay Meadows, Carriere, was charged with conspiracy to commit kidnaping and kidnapping. Spiers is the son of Carol Pearson.

Kevin Ross Pearson, 46, of 13000 George St. was charged with felony extortion, kidnapping, conspiracy to commit extortion and conspiracy to commit kidnapping. Kevin Pearson is Carol’s husband.

Still wanted is Elisha Shere Bourgeois, 28, 1107 Blackwell Lane, on charges of kidnapping, conspiracy to commit kidnapping and conspiracy to commit armed robbery.