Franklin, WI – A suspect linked to the ongoing investigations into two women’s deaths has been charged with kidnapping a 79-year-old woman and stealing her identity, according to police.
The Racine Police Department (RPD) first alerted the public they were searching for 52-year-old Timothy Olson early last month.
Olson was wanted for five counts of felony personal ID theft for financial gain out of Mt. Pleasant at the time of the initial alert, and the RPD said they were “looking to speak to Olson regarding a similar incident” in Racine, according to a press release.
Investigators said Olson had “met women on dating apps,” drugged them, and stole money from them, WITI reported.
He is also a person of interest in the deaths of two women – one in South Milwaukee, and one in Racine, according to ABC News.
The RPD said they are aware of at least three female victims who fell unconscious while on dates with Olson after he allegedly targeted them on dating apps.
At least one of those women died after losing consciousness, investigators said.
According to Franklin Police Chief Rick Oliva, a 79-year-old woman was sitting at Casa Di Giorgio having a glass of wine and reading her tablet on Nov. 23 when Olson approached her and introduced himself as “Mario,” NBC News reported.
The woman, who has been a regular customer at the restaurant, declined the drink Olson offered her and went on about her night.
But as she was leaving the restaurant, Olson allegedly got into the passenger side of her car and threatened her, NBC News reported.
“I have a gun. Drive,” he said, according to the victim. “I won’t hesitate to kill you.”
Chief Oliva said Olson held the woman captive “for a number of hours,” drove her to at least one ATM, and used her credit card to make $270 in unauthorized purchases, NBC News reported.
The victim told investigators that Olson asked her for pain medication and told her he needed money to buy alcohol, according to court documents.
He also allegedly used her cell phone to contact his drug dealer and forced her to drink whiskey, police said.
The woman told investigators Olson wanted to go to her bank until she pointed out that they were closed because of Thanksgiving, NBC News reported.
Olson ultimately pulled into a strip mall and got out of the car, at which point the woman was able to wave her arms to signal a passerby for help, according to police.
The passerby called police and Olson fled the area.
Investigators searched for him for several days before an officer noticed him pushing a bicycle down the street in Franklin on Nov. 29, NBC News reported.
The suspect allegedly took off running to a nearby condominium complex, but officers chased him down.
Police deployed a Taser to help subdue Olson during the ensuing brief struggle before he was ultimately taken into custody, NBC News reported.
Police said they found the 79-year-old woman’s credit card on Olson after his arrest, ABC News reported.
Chief Oliva said investigators believe Olson also committed two burglaries in Franklin earlier on the day he was apprehended, NBC News reported.
Olson has been charged with kidnapping, two counts of burglary, and misappropriating ID information to obtain money, all of which qualify for increased penalties due to the victim’s age.
He was also charged with resisting a police officer.
“I think it’s likely that there’s other victims – maybe some that are embarrassed to come forward,” Chief Oliva said after the suspect was apprehended, according to WITI. “Hopefully that he’s in custody now, if there are victims that, they’re more likely to call their local departments and report that.”
He said he believes Olson would have targeted even more victims if he had not been apprehended.
“There’s no doubt that this person would continue to do what he did until caught,” the chief told reporters.