A Central Florida teenager faces multiple charges after he allegedly staged his own kidnapping in order to get a five-figure ransom from his own father.
Police say the 17-year-old suspect, whose name has not been released, disappeared from the Delray Beach Tennis Center Sunday morning, along with 23-year-old Joshua Andre Pee whom he recruited to help in his plot.
After the pair’s escape, the 17-year-old called his father claiming he had been kidnapped and his captors were demanding a $50,000 ransom for his release.
The teen, originally from Orlando, had been in Delray attending the high-profile Chris Evert/Raymond James Pro-Celebrity Tennis tournament.
The kidnapping plot the teen, male version of “Thelma and Louise” had hoped would end, $50,000 later, in luxury, instead came to an end at a Budget Inn not far from the tennis center where it all began.
Delray Beach detectives and FBI agents tracked the pair down there on Tuesday morning and arrested the teen.
Pee, however, kept up the chase and took off from the motel when police arrived.
He ended up at the front door of Juliana Modzelewski’s home in Delray, where Modzelewski was ironing clothes when Pee burst through her front door.
“He was on his knees and he was begging me,” she told local ABC affiliate WPBF 25 News. “He said, ‘Please hide me.’ And I said, ‘I don’t even know you.’”
Modzelewski pleaded with Pee to stay calm, she told WPBF, and promised she would not call police in return.
“I kept saying, ‘Please don’t hurt me, please don’t hurt me,’” she said. “And you could see in his face he was scared.”
Modzelewski’s son-in-law, however, made the call to police after Pee left the home. Police tracked the 23-year-old down on a nearby bridge and caught him by using a Taser after he again refused to surrender.
Pee is charged with burglary and resisting arrest. His 17-year-old accomplice faces grand theft charges.