Lakeland man accused of using sex tape to set up extortion payment plan with ex

Polk County

LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) – A man in need of money threatened to post a sex tape online if his ex-girlfriend didn’t pay him, Lakeland police say.

Officers took 31-year-old Keith Phillips into custody at the Talbot House this week.

Phillips and his ex-girlfriend dated for three months before breaking up. Police say they reunited for one last rendezvous at the Ramada on Highway 98 North in Lakeland.

The woman found out later that Phillips taped them having sex, according to police.

“She totally was unaware that someone had captured a very private moment,” said Robin Tillett, Lakeland Police Department’s public information officer. “She was no doubt in shock when she started seeing images coming across her phone.”

This week, Phillips determined he needed money. Police say he started messaging his ex on Tuesday, threatening to post the videos on social media if he didn’t pay her.

He sent her images from the video and, at one point, sent her the actual video, police say.

“I need roughly $1600. Not asking you for all of it. HaH [sic] if you can. 4 payments $200 each. You can delete everything …. Final payment in cash at the mall food court. I’ll give yon [sic] my phone you can erase everything I have,” he wrote, according to the affidavit.

“The victim definitely did the right thing when she started screenshotting the threatening messages and went to law enforcement. That is the best thing that you can do so they can take the matter from there,” said Tillett.

Phillips was arrested on several charges, including video voyeurism and extortion. He’s being held on $9,000 bond.

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