The FBI is offering a reward of up to $20,000 for information leading to the identification and arrests of the subjects of these investigations, according an official statement.
The FBI, along with the Knoxville Police Department, Knox County Sheriff's Office and the Oak Ridge Police Department are seeking the public's assistance in identifying and locating individuals responsible for the kidnapping and extortion involving the Y-12 Federal Credit Union and the kidnapping and extortion involving the SmartBank, the statement said.
On April 28, 2015, at about 8:15 a.m., a Y-12 Federal Credit Union employee and his family were kidnapped from their residence and held hostage at gunpoint. While the family was held hostage, the employee was coerced to attempt to remove money from the Y-12 Federal Credit Union, located at 501 Lafayette Drive, Oak Ridge, Tenn. After the robbery, the employee's family members were released unharmed at the Gettysvue Country Club parking lot in Knoxville. The suspects fled and remain at large, according an official statement.
On July 7, 2015, at about 8 a.m, a SmartBank employee and his family were kidnapped from their residence and held hostage at gunpoint. The employee and his family were taken to the SmartBank, which is located at 202 Advantage Place, Knoxville. While at the bank, the employee was coerced to remove an undisclosed amount of money which was provided to the robbers. The employee was then left at the bank and his family was released unharmed a short time later at the end of Pipkin Lane in West Knox County, according an official statement.
The suspects fled and remain at large.
One of the suspects is described as a white man in his late twenties to mid-thirties with possibly salt and pepper hair, bearing an orange tattoo on his neck and standing about five foot, eleven inches to six foot, three inches. He seemed to be about 160 pounds with a lean build wearing black clothing, black face mask dark baseball hat and dark sunglasses, the witness said.
The other suspect is described as a white, possibly mid-twenties, with a shaved head, standing about five, ten to six foot, weighing 200 to 220 pounds with a stocky build and wearing a black face mask, dark pants and shirt and dark sunglasses.
The investigative agencies are exploring the possibility that these two events are related, based on similar subject descriptions and a similar method of operation, the statement said.
This matter is being investigated by the FBI, the Knox County Sheriff's Office (KCSO) and the Knoxville Police Department (KPD) as part of the FBI Safe Streets Task Force, as well as the KPD Violent Crimes Unit, the KCSO Major Crimes Unit and the Oak Ridge Police Department.
Anyone with information that may lead to the identification and/or location of the above subjects should contact the Knoxville FBI Office at 865-544-0751.