SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – An elderly North Port woman was hit in the chest with a stun gun, bound and held captive against her will on Wednesday by a man who was allegedly strung out on methamphetamine, according to Sarasota County detectives.
The victim, 70, told police Anthony Brigitzer, 50, held her hostage for eight hours.
She and Brigitzer had been acquainted for several months and he had helped her with yard work in the past. But at approximately 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Brigitzer made an unexpected visit to the woman’s home and told her he had a story to share.
When she invited him inside, he wrapped his arms around her body and stunned her in the chest with a stun gun.
He became angry when she wasn’t rendered unconscious and tossed the weapon to the side, saying “this thing isn’t working,” according to the affidavit.
He then informed the victim he was strung out on methamphetamine and was going to take all of her money.
Using duct tape, he bound her feet, hands and chest to a chair and forced her to remain in the chair while he searched for valuables.
He found a Smith & Wesson .38 revolver stored under her mattress, which he took with him when he eventually left the residence.
He took $30 from the victim’s purse, but was disappointed with the lack of cash and told the victim “you barely have any money, you need this more than I do,” and threw it on the dining room table.
Brigitzer cut the victim loose around 4:30 pm and left the house in his white Ford pickup truck.
His sister told officers the suspect, who reportedly lives in a hotel in Fort Meyers, showed up to her house unexpectedly around 6 am.
He allegedly told her he would be visiting the victim to talk about watching a drum circle. She told investigators she noticed a white pickup truck parked in front of the woman’s home, but didn’t realize it was her brother’s.
Brigitzer was later located by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office in their jurisdiction and was returned to Sarasota County where he was questioned and arrested.
He’s now being held at the Sarasota County Jail without bond.
Brigitzer was convicted on felony charges for possession of a weapon or ammo by a convicted felon and dealing in stolen property. He was released from prison in August 2016.
He was also a subject of an investigation into the disappearance of missing Bradenton woman Kelly Moriarty whose severed leg was found washed ashore behind a St. Petersburg home. No charges were filed against Brigitzer in connection to the case, but two hatchets, a knife, a stun gun and other items were found in Brigitzer’s car that deputies had thought might be linked to the crime, according to the Herald Tribune.