Baltimore County police detectives arrested a Baltimore City police sergeant Thursday evening on extortion and kidnapping charges, and three city police detectives have had their police powers suspended.
James Lloyd, 45, is a sergeant with the Baltimore City Police Department. County police said detectives received information about a dispute involving a home improvement job in which Lloyd hired the victim to complete a project at his home in Gwynn Oak.
“When Lloyd became unsatisfied with the work, he approached the victim and demanded a refund. During the dispute, the suspect identified himself as a police officer. At one point, Lloyd made the victim get into his car with him and go to a bank to get a certified check for an agreed amount of refund. The victim stated he was in fear of being arrested and complied with Lloyd’s demands,”
county police said in a statement.
According to the police charging documents, Lloyd and the victim agreed on a price of $7,000 to complete patio work at Lloyd’s house. The charging documents say Lloyd contacted the victim on June 18 to say some of the pavers came apart and that the victim agreed to make repairs.
The charging documents state that Lloyd’s wife or girlfriend wanted the patio to be larger. The victim said that work would cost an additional $1,400. When the victim arrived at Lloyd’s house on June 25, the victim said he saw his crew at the house and a minivan with dark tinted windows parked in the roadway, blocking the driveway and his crew’s vehicle.
The charging documents state the victim then saw Lloyd get out of another vehicle that was parked behind the minivan. The victim told police that Lloyd said,
“We have problems. Where is my contract?”
The victim said they went to the backyard of the house, where the victim said he would rectify the problems, but that Lloyd was very upset and repeatedly said they have problems, the charging document states.
Lloyd allegedly demanded the victim’s driver’s license and showed the victim a police badge, the charging document states. The victim said he also saw a handgun under Lloyd’s suit jacket, so the victim gave Lloyd his license because he was afraid, the charging document states.
The charging document states Lloyd took a picture of the license and pulled out a folder with the victim’s picture in it, asking the victim whether he knew his license was suspended for child support. The victim replied no.
At that point, the charging documents state another man with a police badge and a handgun came into the backyard. The victim said he recognized him from when the victim met Lloyd’s girlfriend at the house on June 19.
The charging documents state that Lloyd asked the victim who was going to do the work on the patio, and the victim showed text messages with a subcontractor who had not been responding. The victim told police that Lloyd kept saying, “I want my money back.” The charging documents state that the victim told Lloyd he did not have $7,000 and Lloyd stated he wanted $3,500.
The victim said he was afraid for his safety “due to the aggressive tone of the conversation, the threat of his arrest, along with the visible police badges and firearms.” The victim said Lloyd said he would arrest the victim for driving to his house on a suspended license and take him downtown to jail.
At that point, the charging documents state two other men with police badges and handguns came into the backyard. The other officers then went back to the front of the house to take pictures of the victim’s vehicle, the charging documents state.
Lloyd allegedly told the victim, “We can solve this, give me my money back.” The victim told Lloyd he didn’t have his checkbook, to which Lloyd asked which bank the victim used. The charging documents state Lloyd used his cellphone to look up the closest location of the bank, and said, “Let’s go.”
“The victim advised in fear for his life, he decided to go with suspect Lloyd to the bank and withdraw the money,” the charging document states.
The victim told Lloyd he didn’t want any problems, to which the charging document state Lloyd responded, “Problem would be if I take you in the woods.” The victim said, on the way to the bank, Lloyd kept saying, “You are going to give me my money back and I’m going to give you freedom,” the charging document states.
When they arrived at the bank in Glen Burnie, the victim went inside and asked for a cashier’s check for $3,500. When the victim was asked for identification, he realized Lloyd still had his driver’s license. The victim left the bank to get his license and returned to the bank to get a cashier’s check made out to Lloyd for $3,500, the charging documents state.
The charging documents state they left the bank and went back to Lloyd’s house. The victim said he called someone to pick him up because he didn’t want to drive his vehicle for fear of being arrested. The charging documents state that Lloyd called the victim to ask why he was still there. When the victim explained his reasoning, Lloyd told him to leave, “guaranteeing the victim that no one will arrest him for driving,” the charging document states.
The charging documents state the victim told others about what happened, including a friend who is a Prince George’s County police officer.
The victim provided to a Baltimore County police detective a copy of the cashier’s check that was signed on the back with Lloyd’s bank account number on it, the charging document states. The victim also provided to police a receipt that Lloyd signed and gave to the victim and had the victim sign. The charging documents state the victim also forwarded to police a thread of text messages between him and Lloyd that lasted for several days.
According to the charging documents, phone records show a list of incoming and outgoing calls for Lloyd’s cellphone from May 19 to June 25. The documents also state the surveillance video from the bank showed Lloyd’s police vehicle in the parking lot and the victim making the transaction at the bank.
The charging document states that Lloyd went Thursday afternoon to the Pikesville Precinct to give his statement. Lloyd told police that he conducted a background check on the victim, that he drove the victim to the bank in Glen Burnie and that he gave the victim a receipt and that he was not pleased with the work done at his residence. Lloyd also identified the other city detectives who were present when the incident occurred.
Baltimore City Police Internal Affairs is also conducting an administrative investigation into the matter.
Lloyd was a lead investigator in the death of homicide Detective Sean Suiter in 2017.
Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison released a statement, saying:
“This evening, I was made aware of the arrest of a police sergeant assigned to our homicide unit, in Baltimore County. I have ordered the suspension of the sergeant without pay. In addition, I am aware that there are three other BPD homicide detectives, who are allegedly involved in this incident. These three detectives have had their police powers suspended and are assigned to administrative duties, pending an internal investigation. The Department has opened an internal investigation into their potential misconduct. Any questions related to the criminal aspects of the case should be directed to the Baltimore County Police Department.”
Mayor Jack Young released a statement, saying,
“I am utterly sickened and appalled by the allegations against members of the Baltimore Police Department. I have spoken with Commissioner Harrison and I am fully supportive of the actions he’s taken to address those involved. Any allegations of illegal acts committed by a member of the department will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. We have a police force full of men and women who take serious their oath to protect and serve. We will not stand for any members who violate this sacred promise or the public’s trust.”
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