Georgia man arrested in Greenville Co. kidnapping cases

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GREENVILLE Co., S.C. (WSPA) — A Georgia man has been arrested in connection to kidnappings in which deputies say the victims were forced to make bank withdrawals.

The Greenville County Sheriff’s Office said Jhon H. Vivas, 35, of Lawrenceville, Ga., has been arrested on a fugitive from justice warrant in Georgia. 

Investigators identified Vivas as the suspect in an incident on Jan. 31. Investigators say the victim was approached by two Hispanic women in the parking lot of the CVS on W. Blue Ridge Drive. The women asked for a ride before forcing the victim into her own vehicle at gunpoint.

Deputies say Vivas followed them to the Wells Fargo bank on W. Parker Road where the victim was forced to withdraw a large amount of money from the bank before she was let go.

“You have people that approach you all the time that are looking for help, looking for assistance and there’s good samaritans out there,” said Sgt. Ryan Flood with the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office. “But to see people take advantage of what would be a good samaratan is concerning.”

The second incident happened Feb. 26 at La Unica on White Horse Road and W. Blue Ridge Drive. Investigators say two Hispanic females approached a victim and asked the victim for a ride before brandishing a gun and forcing the victim into her own car. 

“It was a well thought out scheme, fortunately our investigators were able to get out in front of it and get him in custody, but it was a well thought out scheme. It was well-planned,” said Sgt. Flood.

Vivas followed the suspects and victim to two banks and the victim’s home before the suspects left in Vivas’ SUV at the Bi-Lo store at S. Pleasantburg and Mauldin Road, according to deputies. 

Investigators are working to identify three female suspects. One of their photos was obtained from  video surveillance from a gas station near Anderson and White Horse Roads.

Anyone who recognizes her is asked to call Investigator Moates at 864-467-5283.

Deputies say no victims were hurt, but investigators are concerned there could be more victims.

“We’re looking for any potential additional victims who may have not come forward and also victims in other jurisdictions that we just don’t know about,” Sgt. Flood said Friday.

Anyone with information is asked to call 864-467-5283 or Crime Stoppers of Greenville at 23-CRIME. 

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