A Toledo victim is missing for trial... again

Prosecutors say this is the fourth time this victim has turned up missing at a crucial point in this case. And at least two other times, the defendant has been to blame.
Prosecutors say this is the fourth time this victim has turned up missing at a crucial point in this case. And at least two other times, the defendant has been to blame.
Robert Lawhorn at his sentencing hearing on Thursday, March 20.
Robert Lawhorn at his sentencing hearing on Thursday, March 20.
Phyllis Jackson is the sister of the missing victim. She says, "He knows where my brother is. That's what I'd like to tell him. He knows. And, I know he knows."
Phyllis Jackson is the sister of the missing victim. She says, "He knows where my brother is. That's what I'd like to tell him. He knows. And, I know he knows."
Lawhorn and his girlfriend, Jada Farthing, leaving the court room Thursday, March 20.
Lawhorn and his girlfriend, Jada Farthing, leaving the court room Thursday, March 20.

TOLEDO -- A torture victim is missing, and that's having a serious effect on his alleged attacker.

Prosecutors say this is the fourth time this victim has turned up missing at a crucial point in this case. And at least two other times, the defendant has been to blame.

They now fear the victim might be dead and say the defendant is making a mockery of the justice system, which may get him off on all charges.

News 11's Lisa Rantala has this bizarre story.

Phyllis Jackson is the sister of the missing victim. She says, "He knows where my brother is. That's what I'd like to tell him. He knows. And, I know he knows."

It's a case many people describe as a circus with defendant Robert Lawhorn as the ring master. Prosecutor Jim Vail says, "He is someone without a conscious."

Lawhorn and his girlfriend, Jada Farthing, are accused of kidnapping Anthony Pierson last May after he lost their pitbull. The couple reportedly tied Pierson to a pole for three days and tortured him nearly to death.

Now as the two came to court on sentencing day, some believe Lawhorn may have made Pierson disappear.

Phyllis Jackson told News 11, "Just what's been going on this past year, I think he's capable of anything." She last saw her brother Friday. Police say Pierson went missing Sunday.

Though Prosecutor Vail explains, "Without a victim, the state will not be able to go forward." And prosecutors have been here before.

Jackson explains, "Every time it's time to go to trial, just like the prosecutor said, he comes up missing... every time."

They say Lawhorn was behind dropping Pierson off in Memphis last year and then Miami. Pierson told prosecutors he was then held against his will in December, but managed to escape.

Now that Pierson is gone again, Lawhorn has requested to drop his no contest plea. The state is objecting. Prosecutor Vail says, "Of course it angers me. Our justice system is based upon fairness and what is right."

As for asking a judge to issue him a one million dollar bond, the judge made no decisions and continued the case until next month.

Phyllis Jackson says, "To see him walk the streets.. Just chills."

Posted by LS