Man with ‘extensive violent history’ accused of kidnapping, beating person who visited his Thonotosassa home

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Multiple law enforcement agencies and units worked together in Hillsborough County this week to arrest a man deputies called a “dangerous suspect” with an “extensive violent history.”

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office says 45-year-old Robert Kriska was taken into custody Thursday in connection with a kidnapping and aggravated battery incident that happened earlier in the week.

According to deputies, it started on Tuesday when the victim visited Kriska’s home on Ohio Avenue in Thonotosassa and, at some point, Kriska accused the victim of stealing from him.

Kriska contacted friends of the victim and demanded they pay for the victim’s release, the sheriff’s office says. Kriska is also accused of hitting the victim with his hands and a piece of wood, making threatening comments and pointing a gun at the victim.

Deputies say the victim was able to escape the home early Wednesday morning after Kriska fell asleep.

After the victim contacted the sheriff’s office, deputies obtained an arrest warrant for Kriska on kidnapping and aggravated battery charges. They were then able to obtain a search warrant on Thursday for Kriska’s home.

According to the sheriff’s office, Kriska has an extensive violent history including multiple SWAT and crisis negotiation team callouts, as well as past threats to law enforcement.

A spokesperson for the sheriff’s office says due to that history, multiple units were activated to take the man into custody. The units included SWAT, the crisis negotiation team and bomb team as well as K9 and undercover units. The Plant City Police Department assisted with the search warrant.

Deputies say the sheriff’s office SWAT team took Kriska into custody without incident.

“When you’re dealing with such a dangerous suspect, it’s unclear how an arrest like this one will play out. Thankfully, this is the best possible outcome in such a critical situation,” Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement. “He is now back off of our streets thanks to the well-planned effort between several units who helped take him into custody.”

Kriska is now in jail without bond. According to the sheriff’s office, he has previous arrests on charges including aggravated battery, aggravated assault and grand theft.

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