Alleged ‘con man’ Crook behind bars once again

Blackstone Valley
Marcus Crook_634976

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — A Pawtucket man is back behind bars following a byzantine criminal record spanning multiple towns in Rhode Island and Florida.

Marcus Crook, 33, was arrested Wednesday without incident by troopers on the Rhode Island State Police Violent Fugitive Task Force. After processing, he was turned over to Pawtucket police.

He’s been considered on the loose since last fall, when Providence police were looking for him on armed robbery, kidnapping, and conspiracy charges for allegedly holding a knife to a man’s neck and demanding money through a cash-sharing app. He didn’t show up for a court date in Sept. 2020, when he was due to pay restitution on several previous cases.

Crook has been a topic of 12 News coverage since 2018, when he claimed a lawyer “directed” him to commit bank fraud by cashing bogus checks. While that lawyer, Robert McNelis, was also charged, his charges were later dropped.

At that point, Crook’s criminal record had already included charges of forgery, counterfeiting, false reporting of a crime, and obtaining money under false pretenses.

Crook was charged in the fall of 2018 with embezzling at least $30,000, grand theft, and more in Chiefland, Fla., after getting a job as general manager of a car dealership and “put[ting] a magic spell” on coworkers, as a dealer spokesperson said, and pocketing cash payments involving vehicles. He eventually spent about a year in jail.

In 2019, he pleaded not guilty to 16 felony counts including forgery, embezzlement and bank fraud in Providence, East Providence and Pawtucket, but pleaded no contest to check fraud misdemeanor charges in Lincoln and Woonsocket.

When he didn’t show up for court in September, Crook was set to be held without bail because of it.

In all, Crook had 11 warrants he was arrested for on Wednesday, state troopers said, including eight orders for his arrest for failing to appear for court dates.

He’s due back in court Jan. 27.

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