An alleged carjacking and kidnapping of a federal agent while he was on vacation with his family resulted in the arrest of four high school students. The police say that the suspects, who are between 15 and 19 years old, were taken into custody.
Armando, who works for the federal Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, was on vacation with his family when he was held at gunpoint while packing up his car. Armando was then pistol-whipped, tied up, and forced into the backseat of his car. He was also robbed of his wallet.
Over the next two hours, the suspects—Gregory, 19, Dante, 18, and two other teens, ages 15 and 16—allegedly drove around with the abducted agent before his wife contacted the vehicle with OnStar. The suspects then abandoned the SUV at a vacant drug house and fled, according to the sheriff’s office.
“The OnStar representative placed a call to the vehicle and heard someone screaming for help,” Sheriff Jerry stated.
Dante, an alleged gang member, was arrested. Arrest records show Dante was found driving a stolen car less than a mile from the previous night’s carjacking. This was his sixth arrest.
The 15-year-old suspect turned himself in at sheriff’s headquarters, accompanied by his parents. The 16-year-old suspect was arrested just hours later, and Gregory was arrested soon after, according to Sheriff Jerry.
“These high school students were playing a dangerous game, and they got caught playing a dangerous game,” Jerry said. “If you are coming to our community with criminal intent, we want you to think twice about it.”
All four suspects are charged with armed kidnapping, carjacking with a car, and aggravated battery with a firearm.
The younger teens are being held at the state juvenile detention center while Dante remains held without bail in the county jail. It is unclear where Gregory is currently being held.
Jerry said detectives are trying to determine whether all of the teens belong to gangs. After the four suspects abandoned the vehicle with Armando trapped inside, the agent was able to slip out of his bonds. He later received four stitches to close a scalp wound from being pistol-whipped, records show.