South Carolina Man Allegedly Faked His Own Kidnapping to Scam Mother Out of $130, Told Her He Would Be Killed

A South Carolina teenager has been accused of faking his own kidnapping in an attempt to extort his mother out of just over $100, police say.

Emmanuel Franklin, age 19, of Covent Garden Drive in Sumter, was arrested for blackmail on Thursday last week after attempting to carry out the scheme two days prior, local media outlet WLTX reported, citing information from the Sumter County Sheriff's Office.

An arrest warrant released this week alleged the suspect had "caused his mother to believe he would be killed by kidnappers" if she did not provide the cash demanded from her.

The mother, who was not named by the sheriff's office, told deputies she was contacted by a private cell phone number. On the call she heard her son and an unknown voice, who said $130 would have to be placed in a mailbox on Bagnal Drive or her son's life would be at risk.

According to The State, a South Carolina-based newspaper, suspicions were raised after she recognised that the mailbox address belonged to the residence of Franklin's father.

WLTX reported Franklin later admitted he had fabricated the tale to get $130 from his mother. It has not yet been explained why the teenager had needed the money. Also remaining unclear was the identity of the second individual on the cell phone call.

Under South Carolina's Code of Law, blackmail is currently defined as the "intent to extort money or any other thing of value from any person" or threatening to do so. If convicted, the crime is punishable with a maximum 10 years in prison and/or a financial penalty of up to $5,000.

In December last year, law enforcement officials in Illinois said suspect Mitchell Dutz, 18, made up a story about a 13-month-old baby boy being kidnapped by car thieves. It is alleged that he concocted the story to cover up a botched drug deal.

At the time, an Amber Alert was issued, sparking alarm. Dutz pleaded not guilty and is scheduled to face trial next month.

In September, a California woman was arrested after it emerged she had made false claims involving kidnapping and assault. Maria Gonzalez, 32, claimed to have been attacked by two men in her car. In reality she fabricated the story to get out of paying $9,000 to subcontractors of her trucking company, cops alleged.