Saturday, November 28, 2015

Bank teller foils Bristol Township hostage, ransom plot


Bristol Township police say three armed men held seven people hostage, but their plan to obtain $80,000 from the victims was foiled when a bank teller alerted authorities.

The four adults and three children were held hostage at gunpoint in the Levittown Trace apartment complex overnight Sunday into Monday.

Then, on Monday morning, the assailants directed one of the victims to go to a PNC Bank and withdraw $80,000, Bristol Township police Lt. Terry Hughes told reporters.

"They were waiting for the bank to open up," Hughes said.

But the bank would only release $1,500 and a clerk contacted police.

The three suspects -- 38-year-old Orlando McNeil, 21-year-old Daesean Smith and 18-year-old Dennis Redding -- were taken into custody after a brief foot pursuit at the apartment complex, police said. The men were armed but discarded their weapons during the chase.

During the harrowing incident, the hostages were told to strip, then put their clothes back on. Some of the victims' mouths were duct-taped, Hughes said.

Court records show that the three men are facing charges that include kidnapping, unlawful restraint, robbery and burglary.

They are being held after failing to post $1 million bail.

A preliminary hearing for McNeil is scheduled for May 7; hearings for the other two are slated for May 1. 

Contact Emily Babay at 215-854-2153 or Follow @emilybabay on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; Follow @phillynews on Twitter.
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