Man held hostage for hours and robbed at gunpoint after meeting woman from dating app

A man was taken hostage and robbed at gunpoint after agreeing to meet a woman he contacted through a dating app, police said.

The incident took place on Saturday, when a 30-year-old man contacted the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department to inform them that he had been abducted and robbed at an apartment complex in Parkland, Washington — about 13 miles south of Tacoma — according to a statement. that the authorities have published on social media.

The victim told officers he had a match with a woman on the Plenty of Fish dating app and then decided to drive to her apartment complex to meet her in person, police said.

“He said he was in her apartment for about five minutes when a man appeared and pointed a gun at him,” the statement read. “The male suspect ordered the victim to take off his clothes and give the suspect his money. The female suspect then took pictures of the victim.”

The suspects involved in the case then ordered the victim to unlock his cell phone and transfer $6,000 to one of their accounts, but the transaction ultimately failed as it was flagged as fraudulent, the PCSD said.

Numerous other attempts to transfer money were made using various apps, and according to the PCSD, the suspects even pretended to be the victim over the phone in an attempt to unlock one of his accounts.

The suspects eventually released the man after about three hours, but told the victim that they would send the nude photos they took of him to anyone in his contact list if he informed authorities or told anyone what had happened.

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The victim eventually informed the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, and after a brief social media investigation, police were able to identify the suspects who had taken the victim hostage, police said.

Officers were sent to the same Parkland apartment complex the next day and said they recognized the male suspect in the robbery upon arrival. But when police made an attempt to arrest the male suspect allegedly involved in the robbery, the man reportedly attempted to draw a gun.

“When officers tried to handcuff him, the suspect reached for a gun in his pocket,” the PCSD said in a statement. “The officers acted quickly and were able to prevent him from drawing the weapon. The 22-year-old suspect has been arrested and placed in the back of a patrol car.”

The suspect continued to cause trouble while being transported to the police station and managed to break the car’s interior door panel and the top of the seat belt attachment and attempted to use them in a failed attempt to escape from the vehicle, police said. .

The suspect has since been charged with theft in the first degree, kidnapping in the first degree, extortion in the first degree, illegal possession of a firearm in the first degree and malicious intent in the first degree. His bail was set at $125,000.

Said PCSD: “The male suspect has multiple previous felony convictions, including a juvenile conviction for first-degree theft, and second-degree assault and home burglary convictions. He also has a previous conviction for illegal possession of a firearm and is currently under the supervision of the Department of Corrections.”

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A 19-year-old woman identified by police as a suspect involved in the case was also arrested at the Parkland apartment complex. She has since been charged with first-degree robbery, first-degree kidnapping and first-degree extortion. Her bail was set at $50,000.

Police have not yet released the names of the suspects.

The PCSD concluded with a warning about the dangers of online dating and being vigilant when meeting someone for the first time.

“We encourage everyone to review our online dating safety tips to reduce your chances of becoming a victim,” the PCSD said. “We also encourage parents to talk to their children about the dangers of meeting people online. Always do your research and trust your instincts.”

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