Court documents detail troubled past of sex offender accused of holding SC woman captive
PHOENIX, Ariz. — Court documents are shedding new light on the background of Todd Kohlhepp, who was arrested Thursday after a missing Anderson woman was found on his property in chains.
The documents detail Kohlhepp’s high intelligence, behavioral and emotional problems, and troubled family life leading up to the the sex crime from the 1980s that he pleaded guilty to as a teenager.
FOX Carolina obtained hundreds of pages of paperwork from Maricopa County, Arizona, where Kohlhepp was accused of raping a 14-year-old girl in November of 1986, when he was 15-years-old. He pleaded guilty to kidnapping in the case and has been registered as a sex offender, since then. His prison sentence started a year later in November of 1987 and continued until his release in 2001. The pages paint a picture of an angry, troubled teen who exhibited behavioral problems dating back to his time in Spartanburg County District 3 Schools, where he attended as a child.
A sentencing report indicates that Kohlhepp sexually assaulted a 14-year-old victim on November 25, 1986. The teen girl called Tempe, Arizona Police to report the incident. She said Kohlhepp lured her out of her house while she was babysitting her younger siblings by telling her that her ex-boyfriend wanted to talk with her. The report said Kohlhepp pointed a “small blue steel handgun at her head” and “told her to walk down the alley towards his house.” When they arrived, they “walked into his bedroom where he placed gray duct tape over her mouth. He also tied her hands together with a rope. He then removed her clothes, then his clothes and forced the victim to have sexual intercourse with him.”
The victim told police that he would kill her, along with her younger brother and sister if she called the police. After going back home, she called them anyway. The report said Kohlhepp was arrested at his home without incident. “When contacted by police, the defendant was holding a .22 caliber rifle which was pointed at the ceiling. When questioned regarding this incident, the defendant fully admitted his guilty and indicated he used the victim’s ex-boyfriend as a ploy.”
Kohlhepp’s case was moved from juvenile to adult court. Dozens of pages of documents address his behavior as a young child through his teenage years. The judge who moved the case to adult court had a scathing summary of Kohlhepp and his behavior, calling Kohlhepp “behaviorally and emotionally dangerous.” He went on to write, “At less than the age of 9, this juvenile was impulsive, explosive, and preoccupied with sexual content. He has not changed. He has been unabatedly aggressive to others and destructive of property since nursery school. He destroys his own clothing, personal possessions and pets apparently on whim.”
That report includes a psychiatrist’s report that said he had “emotional difficulties and poor impulse control.” It said Kohlhepp underwent counseling for many years in South Carolina and Georgia, from the time he was 8 or 9-years-old.
The report also included statements about Kohlhepp’s relationship mother, who resided in Spartanburg at the time. Kohlhepp had lived with her until the he went to live with his father in the mid-1980s, when the kidnapping occurred. The report states “Mrs. Kohlhepp states that Todd has experienced emotional, behavioral problems for as long as she can remember”. She said these problems went back to 15 months of age. She also mentioned that Kohlhepp had made several threats to harm her and to kill himself prior to the 1986 crime.
The report went on to say, “There is also mention made of Todd destroying his bedroom with a hammer; destroying other children’s projects; hitting other children; cloroxing a goldfish; shooting a dog with a BB gun; being dismissed from the Boy Scouts because he was too disruptive; shredding his own clothes.”
Family trouble was another common theme in the court document. It stated Kohlhepp did not havemuch of a relationship with his biological father until he went to live with him in the 1980s. His mother had re-married and there were also issued with his stepfather.
A quote from his father was also included in the report, stating “The only emotion Todd seems capable of showing is anger.”
Kohlhepp also had problems in the classroom. The court documents mention an evaluation performed by Spartanburg County School District 3 in 1982 when Kohlhepp was a student there. The evaluation stated Kohlhepp talked out in class, destroyed material, had temper outbursts and was defiant. The evaluation said his intelligence appeared to be in the gifted range but that he had pronounced emotional difficulties.
The troubled youngster had even undergone psychological treatment. The documents state Kohlhepp was admitted to the Georgia Mental Health Institute in 1980 because of his hostile and aggressive behavior.
The judge’s report summed up his feelings about Kohlhepp and his behavior saying he was “extremely touchy and defensive” and that Kohlhepp “gets others extremely angry at him.”
“He is extremely self-centered with high levels of anti-social personality functioning, and likely continuing aggressive behaviors toward others in the future,” said the judge. “Twenty-five months of the most intensive and expensive professional intervention, short of God’s, will provide no protection for the public and no rehabilitation of this juvenile by any services or facilities presently available to the Juvenile Court.”