A man suspected of befriending another man, accepting money and hanging out with him for a few days, is now charged with kidnapping and stealing the victim’s vehicle.
Matthew Troy Croker, 37, of the 4400 block of Miramar Arc, is charged with a first-degree felony count of kidnapping and a fourth-degree felony count of unlawful taking of a motor vehicle.
Las Cruces police detectives learned that a local man, the victim, was staying at a local Motel 6 when he met Croker. The two became quick friends. Investigators learned the victim gave Croker money to help improve Croker’s circumstances.
On Tuesday evening, the victim rented a room for Croker at the Staybridge Suites. That evening, while the victim was at the Motel 6, he began receiving text messages from Croker who was demanding more money. At some point, the victim went to Croker’s room where he was threatened, battered and held against his will until he gave Croker more money.
Investigators learned Croker threatened the victim and indicated he would go to the victim’s home and cause harm to the victim’s family if he were not given more money.
Investigators learned Croker forced the victim to go to the Pic Quik at 2001 Bataan Memorial West where Croker demanded the victim obtain money from an ATM within the store. While in the store, the victim informed an employee of his circumstances and asked them to call police. When Croker learned police had been called, he stole the victim’s vehicle and fled the area.
Croker was arrested Saturday afternoon and booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center where he is initially being held without bond.