Indiana mom Joelle Lockwood kept captive in cage by high-school acquaintance, Ricky House Jr.

Joelle Lockwood Found

Joelle Lockwood, an Indiana mom who went missing in early July, was discovered on Saturday after spending the past two months in what Posey County chief deputy sheriff Tom Latham called “modernized slavery.”

According to The Indianapolis Star, Joelle was walking home from a friend’s house on during the night of July 9 when Ricky House Jr., someone she knew from high school, offered her a ride. After getting in the car, she agreed to go to his mobile home to meet his partner, Kendra Tooley. Once there, court records show Ricky placed a rag with chloroform over Joelle’s mouth, causing her to pass out. The record continued, “(The woman) awoke to find her clothing cut off and she was bound to a bed within the trailer.”

For the next 59 days, Joelle was either bound to the bed, contained in a wooden cage or forced to cook and clean for the couple. She was also allegedly forced to have sex with both Ricky and Kendra. Upon his arrest, Ricky admitted he slept with Joelle because he “was attempting to impregnate (Joelle) because (Kendra) was old and unable to have children of her own.”

Ricky Roy House Mug Shot - Kendra Tooley Mug Shot

Joelle was finally discovered last Friday when Kendra bragged to her ex-husband, Ronald Higgs, about having “a girl back here in a cage.” He returned to the mobile home on Saturday and freed Joelle after confronting Ricky.

“He stuck that shotgun right here under my chin with his finger on the trigger,” Ronald told WHET-TV of Ricky. “He said, ‘I’m going to kill you.’ I said, ‘If you’re going to kill me you better do it now or I’m going to take this away from you and beat you to death with it.'”

He then took her back to his house, where she was finally reunited with her family.

Although the case remains under investigation, police officials said much of the evidence they’ve discovered at Ricky and Kendra’s home corroborates Joelle’s story. Ricky was formally charged with four counts of rape, one count of conspiracy to commit rape, five counts of criminal confinement, two counts of kidnapping, one count of battery resulting in bodily injury and one count of pointing a firearm on Monday. Kendra was charged with two counts of rape, one count of conspiracy to commit rape, four counts of criminal confinement, two counts of kidnapping and one count of conspiracy to commit criminal confinement. Both remain at the county jail under individual $50,000 cash bonds.

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