Sheriff's Office: Elderly couple scammed & kidnapped; their daughter is among those arrested

Sheriff's Office: Elderly couple scammed & kidnapped; their daughter is among those arrested

MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. - A 74-year-old Navy veteran and his wife walked into the Martin County Sheriff's Office last month. They finally had it with her daughter.

"They care for her and love her but she embezzled quite a bit of money with these co-defendants from them," said Sgt. Yesenia Carde with the Martin County Sheriff's Office Wednesday.


An arrest affidavit of Lanelle Angelucci shows she had taken $189 thousand from her parents over the past year.

"They're pretty much destitute at this time.  They have no funds.  They were cleaned out," said Sgt. Carde.

According to the arrest affidavits, at one point when the daughter couldn't pay her drug debts, things got very serious.

Affidavits state on February 5th, the couple and their daughter were kidnapped by Nicholas Reeds of Port St. Lucie and Kenneth Ellershaw of Cocoa.  They were driven to a swampy area in Western Palm Beach County where at one point Reeds made them get on their knees and face the canal.  He threatened to "shoot them in the water and let the gators eat them."

"There were some incidents prior to the kidnapping that caused this couple to be in fear and why they didn't come forward.  Unfortunately, it escalated to the kidnapping," said Sgt. Carde.

Investigators say a third man, Erick Fredericks then drove the three back home to Palm City.  Investigators couldn't go into more detail but say if you know of someone in a situation like this, call law enforcement.

Local churches have been coming to the aid of the victimized couple.  If you'd like to help, contact the Sheriff's Office.

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