The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office arrested a 24-year-old man from South Carolina after he allegedly tried to kidnap WWE star Sonya Deville, also known as Daria Berenato, at her home in Lutz.
The man is accused of stalking the 26-year-old wrestling star featured on E!’s reality show Total Divas.
The Sheriff’s Office believes the man began plotting the abduction around eight months ago, according to reports.
The man apparently parked his car at a nearby church around midnight and then walked to the woman’s home at Lake Park Subdivision in Lutz.
Reports indicate that he gained access to the woman’s home by slicing te patio screen and then entering the home through the sliding glass door after waiting for three to four hours for the oman to go to bed. This set off the alarm, causing Deville to look out her window and see the man and immediately flee her property in a car.
She called 911 and the man was still inside the home when police arrived.
Police claim the man had duct tape, mace, zip ties, and a knife, and other supplies they believe he was going to use to take Deville hostage.
He was arrested and charged with criminal mischief, armed burglary, attempted armed kidnapping, and aggravated stalking.
Police claim that they have evidence showing he was stalking the woman on social media for months before showing up on her property.
He was being held without bond, according to reports.
Kidnapping and burglary charges are very serious and require a very strong defense strategy. A conviction for these charges can result in significant prison time, substantial fines, and probation. You need to obtain legal counsel as soon as you are aware of charges against you so that you can take appropriate action and defend yourself.
Attempted kidnapping charges are a second-degree felony in the state of Florida. After your arrest, your charges will be given to the State Attorney’s Office to review. They will conduct an investigation before filing formal charges. This is where having strong legal representation on your side can help you. In most of these cases, the State does not have the time to perform an in-depth investigation. Your criminal defense attorney can meet with them and present any evidence that contradicts the charges, which could result in lesser charges being filed.
You need to implement a smart legal defense strategy right away in these types of cases. As former prosecutors, our Tampa Bay Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton understand how the State approaches these cases and what strategies they will use to try and obtain a conviction. We will use that knowledge to help with your case and formulate an approach to try and avoid a conviction and the harsh penalties that come along with it.
We can negotiate with prosecutors to try and avoid the courtroom and reach a plea deal or advocate on your behalf at trial. Every case is unique and we cannot guarantee results. We can provide you with the legal help and support you need to implement the strongest defense strategy.
If you have been arrested for attempted kidnapping in the Tampa Bay area, our Tampa Bay Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton are here to help you navigate the criminal justice system. We can provide you with a free consultation and meet with you to answer any questions you may have. We will provide you with realistic and honest feedback of what you can expect from your case and will aggressively pursue minimal penalties. We understand the severity of the charges you are facing, which is why we want to tell your side of the story and help you fight these serious charges.