Two Baltimore, Maryland, police officers have been arrested and charged with kidnapping and extortion of a home contractor because they were not happy with a patio renovation work he did for a fellow cop, the Baltimore Sun reports.
According to The Sun, officer Juan A. Diaz, 46, was charged with abusing his position after helping homicide detective James Lloyd confront the contractor and get back money paid for the project.
Prosecutors said Lloyd confronted the contractor on June 25 and demanded a refund, threatening to arrest him if he didn’t comply.
“You are going to give me my money back, and I’m going to give you freedom,” Lloyd told the contractor, according to court documents.
Police said he drove the victim to the bank and ordered him to withdraw money for a refund.
Lloyd was arrested and charged with extorting, kidnapping and abusing the power of his office.
Prosecutors said Diaz obtained $3,500 from the contractor, whose name was redacted in court documents, “by threat of force,” Baltimore County Court records show.
Diaz is facing a felony charge punishable by up to 10 years in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. Both Diaz and Lloyd were suspended by the police department without pay, according to The Baltimore Sun.
Three other officers who are accused of being present during the confrontation have not been arrested but were reassigned to administrative duties instead, Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison told the newspaper.