Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Have a Craiglist Tip: Meet at Our Place
The next time you purchase something on Craigslist, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has a suggestion on how to make the transaction safer: Have the seller meet you at a Charlotte-area police station.
CMPD made the recommendation this month after three armed robberies involving Craigslist purchases. In each incident, the victim agreed to buy a smartphone, then met the seller at a North Charlotte location, where the robbery took place.
While millions of Craigslist transactions occur each month without incident, according to company officials, there is some risk in dealing with strangers over the internet. Meeting sellers at a police station is a clear way to avoid personal harm, but if that’s an uncomfortable proposition, Charlotte police and others recommend always meeting in a public, well-lit place.
Police officials also suggest taking someone with you to the meeting – and letting the seller know you’re doing so. Safety experts say you should never use your home as a meeting place, whether you’re a buyer or seller. Also, if the seller’s profile disappears from the site before the transaction, don’t go to the meeting.
The Craigslist site also recommends being alert to safety issues, however, as well as potential scams. Remember, purchases that don’t involve established retailers or service providers often involve some risk.