A Key West couple is in custody and facing a litany of charges after they kidnapped a man and stole his car while holding him hostage at knifepoint for hours last month.
Steven Randell Solstad, 31, and Madison Ambria Megerle, 22, both face charges of kidnapping, aggravated assault, robbery, grand theft and grand theft of a motor vehicle.
The pair were picked up by Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office last month. Megerle was moved from Palm Beach County to the Monroe County Detention Center on Stock Island early Friday morning. Solstad remains in Palm Beach County where he is facing charges of possession of a stolen vehicle. He also has drug-related warrants out of Key West. Solstad will be moved to the jail in Monroe County when his case in Palm Beach County is resolved.
The case for the Sheriff’s Office began when the 50-year-old male victim told Sgt. David Fernandez on Feb. 7 that his Nissan Versa car had been stolen. The victim’s statement included details that led Sgt. Fernandez to believe the case involved more than a stolen vehicle. Detectives Ken Fricke, Wendy Negron and Boyd Williams began investigating the victim’s timeline of events that ended with his car stolen.
In summation: The victim stated he went to Solstad’s residence in Key West to smoke marijuana on Feb. 2.
The victim stated the marijuana was laced with something, that forced him to sleep in his car.
He said at some point, Solstad and a woman later indemnified as Megerle got in his car without his permission. They forced him out of the driver’s seat and into the passenger seat.
Solstad then began driving to different locations around Key West and Stock Island while punching the victim and threatening his life. Solstad produced a carpenter’s razor knife at some point and held the victim hostage in the car. Solstad and Megerle demanded the victim turn over all his money multiple times.
The victim stated he gave all the money he had on him: About $150. They made several stops around the area whereupon other people — known to Solstad and Megerle — also threatened the victim and demanded he turn over money. At one point, they dove through a bank drive through on North Roosevelt Boulevard, but the bank wouldn’t let the victim withdraw money without identification. Security camera footage at the bank was one of several security cameras that helped Detectives build their case against the two defendants.
Throughout the ordeal, the suspects demanded the victim tell them where he lived. The victim finally acquiesced and the pair began stealing everything of value the victim possessed, including, but not limited to, several smart phones, and iPad and clothing.
All the while, the victim stated they forced him to do drugs, which kept him incapacitated. They continued to threatened him with knife. The victim stated Solstad would put him in a head lock and hold the knife to his throat. The suspects stayed at his residence for about 24 hours. The victim stated the whole ordeal might have lasted longer than 30 hours.
The suspects finally left in the victim’s car. The victim then checked himself into a medical clinic given he was unsure of the narcotics he was still under the influence of.
Detective Fricke began piecemealing the chronological order of the victim’s narrative of events, all the while coming across video footage or other evidence that corroborated the victim’s story.
Detectives received information Solstad and Megerle may be in Palm Beach County and the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office was quickly able to locate the Nissan Versa and the two suspects.
The car was returned to the victim.
The knife used in the incident was also found in the victim’s car.
More charges could be pending.