Two men were robbed at gunpoint after meeting with a man to sell him a diamond ring they’d listed on Craigslist, police say.
The incident took place on Detroit’s west side, on the 16100 block of Hubbell, which is south of West McNichols and east of Greenfield.
The victims told police they’d met with a man to him a diamond ring valued at $6,500. Instead, the man pulled a handgun and stole the diamond, their wallets, and their cellphones, walked back to his car and drove off.
Read more here.
Online exchange transactions are welcome at the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office’s substation in Rochester Hills, Mich., on Barclay Circle, off of Auburn Road.
The substation recently opened an e-commerce safety zone with 24-hour video surveillance. Two well-lighted, green-striped parking spots are located near the front door of the substation, right next to the handicapped spots. A sign states that the area is an e-commerce designated zone, and it lists emergency and nonemergency police phone numbers.
Read more here.
A secure e-commerce site is located near the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office’s Rochester Hills substation, on Barclay Circle, north of Auburn Road.(Photo by Linda Shepard )
As a response to the variety of “scams” that occur, the sheriff’s office Rochester Hills substation is now providing a safe E-Commerce zone in their parking lot for individuals who want to complete online purchases or sales more safely.
The E-Commerce zone is well lit with clearly marked signage and is also equipped with a high definition camera which records all activity within the zone.
Read more here.
Increasing crime from buying or selling on social media has
prompted the Menominee Police Department to become a Safe Trade Zone.
“Our citizens and friends should meet the buyers or sellers in our parking lot or in
our lobby area in an attempt to ensure a safe and honest transaction. If
someone refuses to meet at our location, I would highly recommend that you
cancel the transaction” said Police Chief Brett Botbyl.
The parking lot in front of the Police and Fire Department can be
utilized along with the lobby area in-between the Police Department and City
Hall. The lobby area can be utilized during normal business hours. When
utilizing the parking lot area, please do not block the garage doors so Police
and Fire vehicles can exit for an emergency. The department is located at
2509 10th Street, Menominee, MI 49858
Delta Twp., Lansing, MI - If you've ever met up with a stranger to make a Craigslist sale, you've probably felt those pre-sale jitters. Now, you have a safer option.
There's a new "E-Commerce Zone" parking lot in Delta Township that's upping security.
"We want you to be safe and this is the safest alternative right now," says Eaton County Sheriff Lt. Mark Wriggelsworth.
The zone is relatively small, it's the front parking lot of the Eaton County Sheriff's Delta Patrol Station near Canal Road and West Saginaw Highway.
It's well-lit and equipped with 24-hour surveillance cameras that are motion sensitive.
"You never know who you are going to meet," says Lt. Wriggelsworth, "and I think we, a lot of people, have made transactions not knowing who they are going to meet."
For Delta Township, not only is it a way to keep people safe, it's a cheap, simple plan to keep up with the times.
"That's why we established this E-Commerce Zone because, as more people engage in Internet commerce, we wanted to make sure that they are well protected," says Delta Township's Supervisor Ken Fletcher.
All sales final: Cities provide e-commerce zones to thwart crime
John Bacon, USA TODAY4:02 p.m. EDT April 21, 2016
The last straw in Boca Raton, Fla., was when someone sold a MacBook Pro on Craigslist and met the prospective buyer inside a Barnes & Noble, only to have the suspect snatch the computer and run out of the store.
"They did everything we ask people to do when exchanging goods after an online sale," police spokesman Mark Economou said. "Public place, well lit, a safe place. And still a crime was committed."
Police made an arrest in the case. They also announced the opening of the police station lobby and parking lot for property sales and exchanges. No questions asked. Chief Daniel Alexander figured that someone planning a crime is a lot less likely to commit one at police headquarters.
"We invite you to do your deal (legal, that is) at our place," Chief Daniel Alexander said in a blog that wrapped with a recurring, iconic line from the 1980s cop show Hill Street Blues. "Let’s be careful out there."
Boca Raton learned its lesson 18 months ago. On Thursday, Washington, D.C., joined the growing list of cites providing e-commerce safe zones designed to curb the crime that can occur when closing an online deal. The city unveiled three "Exchange Zone" areas, well-lit and near police stations, "giving Washingtonians a safe place to purchase or exchange property," Washington Police Chief Cathy Lanier said.
The crimes the zones target can be more serious than theft. Advanced Interactive Media Group (AIM), an industry watchdog, says more than 100 murders have taken place through Craigslist connections.
The most notorious case involved Boston University medical student Philip Markoff, dubbed "the Craigslist killer," who was accused of murdering a woman who offered massage services on the site. Markoff, also accused of robbing two other women, committed suicide in his cell in 2010 while awaiting trial.
Scores of police departments now provide some type of safe zone. AIM operates a website, safetradestations.com, that provides safe locations for e-commerce exchanges across the nation.
Craigslist says its transactions are safe, that the number of thefts and violent crime are minuscule compared to the number of transactions made every day. But it does have a safety page suggesting, among other things, that buyers and sellers "insist on a public meeting place like a cafe, bank, or shopping center. Do not meet in a secluded place, or invite strangers into your home."
In North Miami, Fla., where a man was fatally shot in 2009 while selling a Rolex in an online deal gone bad, police have designated two parking spots for transactions. InHartford, Conn., "Operation Safe Lot" welcomes dealmakers to a parking lot in front police headquarters. Hartford has its own Craigslist murder case; police say a man was killed in 2013 while selling computer tablets.
"That case was a main driving point in putting this together," Assistant Chief Brian Foley said. "I can tell you that our Craigslist robberies have virtually dropped off the face of the earth."
Delta Township, Mich., posted "E-Commerce Exchange Zone" signs in the parking lot of the sheriff's office this week. Supervisor Ken Fletcher says they haven't had much of a problem with transaction crimes, but "for a couple hundred bucks of signage it's worth it."
In Overland Park, Kan., police spokesman Richard Breshears said the headquarters lobby and parking lot are open 24/7 for people wanting to conduct transactions. The only problem he can foresee is that, if the program grows too popular, it could disrupt day-to-day business. But so far the advantages outweigh any concerns, he said.
"We want people who are suspicious about a deal to use the space," he said. "Criminals don't usually want to come to the police department for any reason. And if something were to happen, we don't have to send officers out. We can respond right there."
ESCANABA - Escanaba Public Safety announces that the department's parking lot can be used by
online buyers and sellers as a safer place to make transactions in person.
The selling of private vehicles, household items, clothing and other personal belongings online is
increasing with national and regional sites connecting buyers with sellers via various social media.
Due to an increase in crimes related to buying and selling online, Escanaba Public Safety recently
joined SafeTrade - a national safety initiative for people to complete online transactions safely when meeting in person.
"People should meet sellers or buyers at our public parking lot, located on the east side of Public
Safety," said Escanaba Public Safety Director Ken Vanderlinden. "If a person refuses to meet here, I
would recommend that the transaction be avoided."
Person-to-person exchanges can be conducted in the department's public parking lot outside Public Safety, which is located at 1900 3rd Ave N. The parking lot is a well-lit area with camera
SafeTrade is a program used by police and sheriff's departments to encourage transactions at their facilities, for departments to strengthen safety and security initiatives, and for users to insist on "SafeTrade" by conducting transactions outside local police or sheriff's offices.
Detroit area Troy Police Department advises people to use their facility for Craigslist transactions
With the rise of Craigslist-related crimes and scams, police departments across Oakland County, Michigan are offering residents to use their buildings for safe transactions. Recent reports Craigslist transactions gone bad have prompted the department to remind the community that their facility is under video surveillance 24/7. Read the whole story here.
Troy Police Officer Janice Pokley looks at Craigslist at her desk at the department. Thursday, February 18, 2016. Tim Thompson-The Oakland Press