Two men who had invited two teenage girls back to their guest room early Tuesday morning "to party" at the Best Western Motel on East Third Street suddenly found themselves facing four masked men who robbed them at gunpoint, state police said.
Investigators allege that the two teenagers, Monica Mercedes Smith, 19, of Jersey City, N. J., and Ciara Marie Gadsden, 16, East Orange, N.J., conspired with four men in robbing motel guests Justin Green and Chris Temples at the business at 1840 E. Third St. about 1 a.m.
The four men remained at large as of Tuesday night.
Smith and Gadsden were nabbed in the city soon after the robbery, riding together in a Ford Escape with an Alabama license plate. Green was brought to the scene by state troopers, and he identified the two females as the same ones involved in the robbery, Trooper James Wool said in an affidavit.
Green told police that he and Temples "met the two females by chance in the area of the hotel lobby," Wool said.
"They asked the females if they were interested in coming to their room to 'party,' and they agreed," Wool said he was told.
Once in the room, one of the females went to get a bucket of ice, taking the room key with her, Wool said. When she returned to the room, "she was followed by four black men wearing masks and gloves and brandishing pistols," Wool said.
The two motel guests were ordered to lay face down on a bed, and pillows were placed over them so they could not see," Wool said.
The two females and the four men then "ransacked the room then fled with the victims' cellphones as well as cash and assorted cards, Wool was told.
Smith and Gadsden, who is being tried as an adult, were arraigned late Tuesday afternoon before District Judge Kenneth T. Schriner Jr. on charges of robbery, theft, receiving stolen property, possession of an instrument of crime, possession of a prohibitive offense weapon, carrying a firearm without a license and conspiracy.
The two were committed to the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of $100,000 bail each.