Authorities say a 16-year-old northern New Jersey girl and her boyfriend staged a fake kidnapping in a failed bid to extort $2,000 from her mother.
Hackensack police tell The Record that the girl ran away from home on Sunday and went to stay with her boyfriend, 19-year-old city resident Zakaria Nuhu.
The couple had "legal issues" they had to pay for, so they called the girl's mother and said she was being held captive. Authorities say the girl was heard in the background yelling for help, but the girl's sister overheard the conversation and recognized Nuhu's voice.
No money ever changed hands, and the girl was later found safe.
Nuhu was charged with creating false public alarm, attempted theft by extortion and employing a juvenile to commit a crime. The girl will face charges as a juvenile.