Kidnapping suspect extradited

Takiese Bethea is back in West Virginia after being arrested in New Jersey

BUCKHANNON — A New Jersey man who was arrested for his role in an alleged kidnapping and robbery attempt at the Colonial Motel has been transferred to West Virginia.

Takiese Naceer Bethea, 23, of Camden, N.J. was arrested for kidnapping, robbery or attempted robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery, all felonies, for the kidnapping and attempted robbery of Frank Hall on Feb. 21.

Chief Matt Gregory of the Buckhannon Police Department said Bethea was arrested a few months ago in Camden, N.J. and has been in jail awaiting extradition.

“He was fighting his extradition when he was initially arrested, which required us to have to obtain a governor’s warrant and secure his release back to West Virginia,” Gregory said.

Police say that Bethea, along with Lamere Troup, 24, of Camden, N.J.; Michaelina Sarne, 42, of Sicklerville, N.J.; and Alayna Puglia, 23, of Philadelphia, Pa., conspired to rob Hall, the brother of Sarne.

They traveled from New Jersey to West Virginia, stopping along the way to purchase duct tape, zip ties, mace, gloves and masks. After arriving in Buckhannon, Sarne checked herself into a room at the Colonial Motel which had been reserved by Puglia, Sarne’s daughter. 

Bethea and Troup allegedly entered the room after Hall arrived and sprayed him with mace. Hall was then ordered to the ground at gunpoint and restrained using duct tape around his wrist and ankles.

When Hall denied having any money, he was beaten and stabbed multiple times.

A motel employee responded to a noise complaint, and when no one answered at the door, the employee called police.

Bethea had left the room prior to police arriving. However, Troup remained behind and was arrested that day. Troup allegedly told police he was promised $10,000 for his role in the robbery.

He remains held without bond after being arrested for kidnapping, burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, robbery or attempted robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery, all felonies. Troup’s case was transferred to Upshur County Circuit Court and in March a competency evaluation was ordered.

Sarne was also found in the hotel room. She initially claimed to be a victim and was released, but she and Puglia were each later arrested for conspiracy to a felony, a felony. They were arraigned on a $75,000 bond — $25,000 cash or surety and $50,000 personal recognizance. Both posted bond and were released. Their cases have also been transferred to circuit court to await further action.

Gregory said the investigation has taken many hours.

“I commend Sgt. William Courtney for his diligent efforts in investigating the case,” he said. “He spent a lot of time and was able to gain a lot of valuable information during his investigation that identified all four of the arrests.”

Gregory also noted that Bethea had been identified in New Jersey as a member of a gang known as G-Shine. He is being held without bond on the kidnapping charge.

If convicted, Bethea faces life in prison for kidnapping, up to 10 years in prison for robbery and one to five years and/or up to a $10,000 fine for conspiracy to commit robbery.


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