Mother Defends Armed Trio Arrested at Holland Tunnel: 'They Wanted to Bring a Girl to Safety'
The mother of one of three Pennsylvania residents arrested on the New Jersey side of the Holland Tunnel while trying to cross into Manhattan with an arsenal of weapons is speaking out.
Michele Plocinik, the mother of 29-year-old Kimberley Arendt, spoke to Inside Edition about her daughter’s arrest with two men who claim they were going to Brooklyn to save a young woman in a drug house.
“She called me and said, ‘mom, I’ve been arrested.' They're not vigilantes. They’re trying to save people. They’re saviors these people,” the 52-year-old said. “There was no harm intended. There were no terroristic threats, all they wanted to do was go get this girl and bring her to safety.”
Police found seven loaded guns, body armor, knives, 2,000 rounds of ammunition and night vision goggles inside the bright green truck of the trio.
They say they are “anti-drug crusaders” who were on a mission to rescue the teen girl, who was from Pennsylvania, in Brooklyn.
The ringleader, John Cramsey, 50, who owns a gun range near Allentown, Pennsylvania, called Higher Ground Tactical — the name depicted on the vehicle stopped at the Holland Tunnel.
He launched his personal war on drugs after his 20-year-old daughter, Alexandra (Lexii), a model, died in February from a heroin and fentanyl overdose.
Early Tuesday morning, Cramsey, his buddy Dean Smith, 53, and Arendt, who was a friend of the teen they were going to rescue, made their way to New York City.
Cramsey posted on the Facebook page he runs, “Enough is Enough,” which is an anti-heroin group in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania.
'I'm currently 11 miles outside of Brooklyn, New York, and going to a hotel to extract a 16-year-old girl who went up there to party with friends. This young lady from Wilkes-Barre is scared and wants to come home. Last night she woke to find her friends body next to her... Her friend died of a heroin overdose,” he wrote.
Officials at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said there was no link to terrorism.
The trio was arrested and faces a series of gun charges. It is unknown if they have legal representation.