Man guilty of kidnap, abuse after wild RV chase that ended in Kern County

State News

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A man arrested after he led police on a wild RV chase with his young children last year has been convicted of kidnapping, child abuse, injuring a spouse and other charges.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said Monday that jurors deliberated for two hours before returning guilty verdicts for 48-year-old Stephen Merle Houk.

Houk was arrested in May 2018 after being on the run for two days. He escaped into a Bakersfield orchard after leading police on a 100-mile chase in his motor home that began in Hollywood.

Houk’s 10-month-old and 3-year-old children were inside the RV. They weren’t hurt.

Investigators said the incident began after Houk fought with his wife and threatened to kill her.

He faces 78 years in prison when he’s sentenced Sept. 4.

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