Torture suspect arraigned, indicted on charges

Jerry Gilligan

Jerry Gilligan

KINGMAN – Torture suspect Jerry Gilligan made a short appearance at his arraignment Thursday morning in Mohave County Superior Court and pleaded not guilty to numerous felony charges after he allegedly kept his wife and her son captive for four days in their Center Street home.

A 13-person grand jury handed down a 26-count indictment, including kidnapping, sexual conduct with a minor under age 12, sexual assault, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and administering a dangerous drug (methamphetamine) to another.

The alleged crimes occurred Sept. 13 to Sept. 17. In count No. 22, it alleges Gilligan, 69, intentionally, knowingly or recklessly caused serious physical injury to one of the victims using battery acid.

Gilligan was represented by Alex Bolobonoff, although he said the county had not assigned a permanent lawyer for Gilligan yet. Jacob Cote is the prosecuting attorney.

“This is the worst (case) that I can think of in my 25 years,” said Rusty Cooper, the Kingman Police Department deputy chief. He called the crimes “unimaginable.”

The investigation into the events began when Gilligan’s wife, 39, arrived at Kingman Regional Medical Center on Sept. 17 complaining of battery acid in her eye. The wife said that over the four previous days, Gilligan restrained her and her son and forced them to perform sex acts on him and on one another, according to the KPD.

Gilligan videoed and took pictures of the sex acts and beat them with a wooden stick. While they were bound, Gilligan shaved the hair of both victims’ heads, the KPD reported.

Information was developed that indicated a two-year history of sexual abuse and assault of both victims, KPD reported. The 11-year-old was eventually released back to the custody of his mother.

Gilligan was on parole at the time, having been convicted of killing his stepfather, William Bopp, 78, who was tied up and beaten in his Tucson health food store in December of 1980. Gilligan served 24 years for the crime.

Along with first-degree murder, Gilligan was convicted for theft, burglary and arson of a structure, and served the convictions concurrently, according to the Arizona Department of Corrections.

Gilligan was remanded back to the custody of the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office without bond by Judge Billy Sipe.

His next court appearance will be for a case management conference Nov. 7 at 8:30 a.m. in Mohave County Superior Court.