Ride From Airport No Good Deed: Woman Robs Victim of $5,000 With Help From Fellow Thugs, Cops Say

Taking a cab from the airport this weekend would have been cheaper -- and a whole lot less frightening -- for a Florida visitor who was robbed of $5,000.

The victim, who wasn't named in court records, was picked up at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport on Saturday at about 3:45 p.m. by an acquaintance, 23-year-old Valerie Prieto.

Records don't state the nature of their relationship. But they were apparently supposed to check into a hotel together, and she knew the victim was loaded with cash. He didn't mind when Prieto suggested they stop at a friend's home first to buy some pot.

Prieto convinced the guy to come with her into the house at 4619 South 20th Street, and he quickly found himself looking into the barrel of a gun.

Darren Ross, 25, searched the victim's clothing while an unknown suspect held a gun to the man's head, demanding he give them everything he had, the victim later told police.

As if that wasn't enough, Travis Raines, 23, then walked into the living room from a bedroom -- and he was armed with an assault rifle. As the victim begged for his life, the thugs stole the five grand he had in his wallet, plus his iPhone and some credit cards, records state.

The guy ran to a corner liquor store and called police as soon as they freed him. Prieto fled in a car with Ross, but cops caught up to them soon after.

There's no word on the fourth suspect, whose name still isn't known to police.

Later, the victim told police he'd been in contact with the woman for a couple of weeks prior to flying out, and that she knew he had $5,000.

"Too trusting" is likely no longer one of the victim's character traits.

No mug shot was available for Prieto, by the way.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.