Couple pins fake robbery on friends who left them at beach, deputies say

A day at the beach with friends turned ugly when one couple left another without a ride after an argument at New Smyrna Beach in Florida, deputies said.

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In retribution, the stranded man and woman called 9-1-1 to say they had been robbed and described their friends as the assailants, the Volusia County Sheriff's Office said.

Donald Benevento, Nicole Henson, William Richardson and Latosha Henderson were spending the day at the beach Sunday but a disagreement started to turn things sour as the day went on, deputies said.

Ultimately, Benevento and Henson left Richardson and Henderson stranded in a parking lot, investigators said.

Upset about being left, Richardson called 9-1-1 and said a man had pushed his girlfriend and stolen her purse, deputies said.

He described Benevento as the robber and gave investigators a description of his vehicle, which was pulled over a short time later at the intersection of Lytle Avenue and Live Oak Street, a VCSO report said.

Deputies drove Richardson and Henderson to the intersection to identify the person they said stole the purse.

That's where their story fell apart, investigators said.

"Deputies questioned (Richardson and Henderson) and realized they had fabricated the whole incident and they actually knew the subjects," the report said.

Deputies released Benevento and Henson and arrested Richardson and Henderson on charges of filing a false police report.

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