HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — A man from South Carolina had been planning to travel to Florida to hold a WWE and UFC star hostage, police said.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Phillip Thomas II Sunday after he traveled to Lutz, Florida, to take Daria Berenato, also known in WWE circles as Sonya Deville, hostage. Sheriff’s deputies said he had been planning it for more than eight months, WFLA reported.
Deputies said Thomas stalked Deville on social media and admitted to his plans, WFLA reported.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s office said Thomas entered Deville’s home through a sliding back door after she had gone to bed, ESPN reported. He triggered an alarm and Deville said that she looked out a window and saw Thomas at her home. Deville and a guest left the home and called 911. When deputies arrived, they said they found Thomas inside with a knife, plastic zip ties, duct tape and mace, ESPN reported.
Deputies said Thomas had gotten into the property earlier in the night and was inside for three to four hours.
Thomas was charged with attempted armed kidnapping, armed burglary and aggravated stalking — all felonies, along with the misdemeanor, criminal mischief, ESPN reported.
Deville addressed the alleged break in on social media after Thomas’ arrest.
Cox Media Group