Kemper County, Miss. After many months, the woman considered the mastermind behind the kidnapping of a six-year-old Kemper County child is now behind bars. Jesse Mae Pollard was sentenced last month to 25 years in prison.
"I think justice was served in this case," Kemper County Sheriff James Moore says. "Ms. Pollard had plenty of opportunities to try to take a plea bargain for herself. Out of everybody involved, everybody took the plea. She decided she was going to take her chances in court, and I think she realized that was a bad decision to make."
Pollard was convicted in November for planning and enlisting the help of others to take a six-year-old relative from school, then use the child as a bargaining chip in a dispute with the child's mother over property. Pollard was convicted of conspiracy, kidnapping and obstruction of justice.
"There's no way you can make any good sense out of this whole process," the sheriff says. "I just cannot even still believe that she planned and went forward with all of this. And the other part of it is I can't believe she convinced so many people to go along with it."
Sheriff Moore says when it comes to avoiding future crimes like this, the key lies within enforcing the right school policies.
"There's no way that law enforcement can prevent it, but I think if the school comes up with how you get kids out of school, it's going to make the difference," he says. "Those teachers and those school administrators on ground are the first line of defense, so if those policies have not been fixed, then we still have a problem."
This past November, Pollard was convicted of conspiracy, kidnapping, and obstruction of justice.