Two men are in custody after police say they terrorized a Northeast Philadelphia family for days this month by holding them at gunpoint for ransom, pistol-whipping and burning a man, and threatening his infant child.
Philadelphia police say it remains unclear why the Holmesburg family were targeted and held against their will beginning on Feb. 4. The suspects are accused of kidnapping a man, then refusing to release him and several relatives until Feb. 6. Prosecutors say they demanded that he and his family withdraw money and purchase items for them, as well as hand over wallets, gold bars, jewelry, and a vehicle.
Additional suspects are still at large, said Capt. John Ryan, commanding officer of the Northeast Detective Division. He said investigators are working with federal authorities to learn more about the incident. A spokesperson at the FBI’s Philadelphia division declined to comment.
New details about the nightmarish weekend were included in charging documents filed in the case against Anthony Clark, 52, who was arrested Feb. 8 in connection with the incident. A second man, George Pollydore, 28, was arrested Wednesday. Both are being held at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility and face multiple counts of aggravated assault, robbery, and kidnapping.
The Defender Association of Philadelphia, which is representing Clark, did not respond to a request for comment. Pollydore did not have an attorney listed Thursday.
Investigators said the men were armed when they abducted the 45-year-old man in front of his house on the 4600 block of Decatur Street. Prosecutors allege Clark and others drove him around and forced him to wire money to them, withdraw money from ATMs, and purchase a television and other items from Target.
The group wore gloves and masks, police said, and held the man hostage for the weekend along with his wife, 10-month-old child, and two others — the man’s 68-year-old father and a family friend who had stopped by the house to check on them.
Clark is alleged to have punched, kicked, and pistol-whipped the man, in addition to burning him in the face with a hot iron, according to court papers. Prosecutors say that another victim was punched in the mouth and that the assailants held the infant upside down and wrapped a necktie around his neck.
One male victim was treated at the hospital and released. The others were not seriously injured. . Attempts to reach the victims were unsuccessful Thursday.
Ryan said police weren’t aware of the hostage situation until the family members were released after the captors had fled on the evening of Feb. 6. Authorities have not disclosed the total amount of money taken, saying only that it was “significant.” Investigators have recovered some surveillance footage showing the suspects throughout the weekend.
Clark and Pollydore are scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing in April.