BERKELEY (CBS SF) – Five South Carolina men have been arrested for allegedly kidnapping a 21-year-old man at a Berkeley motel on Saturday night and threatening to kill him unless they were paid $30,000 in ransom money, police said.
Officers who responded to the Knights Inn Motel at 1512 University Ave. at Sacramento Street at about 10 p.m. on Saturday to investigate a report of a kidnapping learned that the victim had been kidnapped at about 6:30 p.m. and the suspects had threatened to kill him unless his friend brought them $30,000 in cash in the vicinity of Tracy in San Joaquin County, according to police.
Further investigation led police to Patterson, a city about a 30-minute drive south of Tracy, and Patterson police were able to arrest the five suspects and locate the victim, Berkeley police said.
Patterson police wrote in a posting on Facebook that “the victim was a little worse for wear but will recover from his injuries.”
Patterson police warned, “If you come to Patterson and commit crime we will find you and take you to jail.”
They said, “Do not come to Patterson and commit crime, please.”
Patterson police said the suspects were arrested with an assault rifle at the Kit Fox RV Park at 240 Rogers Road in their city.
Berkeley police said the suspects are being held in the Berkeley Jail without bail on suspicion of kidnapping for ransom, torture, robbery and possession of an assault weapon.
Police identified the five South Carolina suspects as Jamikaco Tyrone Thompson, 27, of Greenville, Vacenta Rakey Rice, 27, of Fountain Inn, Antravious Marquis Evans, 19, of Fountain Inn, Racal Jamikaco Thompson, 24, of Greenville, and Rodquavious Mikeon Whitehurst, 20, of Greenville.
Jail records indicate that Rice works at a funeral home and a high school sports website indicates that Whitehurst was a point guard on the basketball team at Greenville High School and graduated in 2016.
The five suspects tentatively are scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday.
Berkeley police declined to say if they’ve learned why the five South Carolina men were in their city.
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