Cassidy Rainwater: Missouri men accused of keeping missing woman in cage half-naked
DALLAS, TEXAS: Missouri natives James Phelps, 58, and Timothy Norton, 56, have been charged with keeping a missing woman in a locked cage on their property. Cassidy Rainwater, a 33-year-old woman who had been missing since late July, was reportedly kept in a half-naked condition in the cage. The pair has been charged with first-degree kidnapping.
Dallas County Sheriff’s Office got a tip from the FBI on the missing woman's case, which led to the arrest. According to court documents, a tipster said a photo showed Rainwater, who has ties to Dallas, Laclede and Greene counties, being held captive while partially nude.
Also, Phelps is reportedly the last person to have seen Cassidy Rainwater. On September 1, Phelps told a detective who met with him at his Lebanon home that Rainwater was staying with him until she moved to Colorado. Phelps then claimed that Rainwater left his home in the middle of the night about a month earlier and met someone in a vehicle at the end of his driveway. Investigators obtained a search warrant for Phelps’ cellphone and found seven photos of Rainwater partially nude while being held in a cage on his property in Lebanon, court records show.
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Detectives then identified Timothy Norton, also of Lebanon, in connection with the case and he confessed that Rainwater was being held at Phelps’ property. According to court records, Norton admitted to helping restrain the woman on July 24 at Phelps’ home. Both, Phelps and Norton are being held without bond. Phelps is next due in court on October 5. His public defender was not available for a comment on the case. Norton appeared in court on Tuesday, September 28, without an attorney, and is due back in court next week. According to court records, both men have been charged with kidnapping, facilitating a felony, inflicting injury and terrorizing. The sheriff’s office has not released an update on Rainwater’s whereabouts. "Due to the extreme nature of the crime and the continuation of the investigation, additional details cannot be released at this time," the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office said on September 18.