We've warned our readers before to be careful when dealing with Craigslist. Most of the time, it's the go-to place to buy and sell goods and services, from apartments and jobs to cars and antiques, but it also has a dark side.
That dark side includes scammers and hackers, hit men, murderers, kidnappings, carjackings and robberies. Today's example is just another incident among many transactions gone awry.
Police in Madison County, Missouri (south of St. Louis) are asking for help and any information that can help apprehend two Craigslist carjackers.
The victim was selling his car through the online classified site when he met a "a black male, between 5’1″ and 5’3″, thin with lighter skin along with short dread locks" along with "a black female with him described as light skinned, short, with a thin build."
During the test drive, the alleged carjacker pulled a gun on the victim and told him to get out of the car. The victim swatted at the gun and it discharged. The victim then got out of the car, went back to where his friend was, then called 911.
Police then pursued the suspects in a high speed chase, but called it off once speeds reached over 100 miles per hour.
In the meantime, the woman involved with the suspect was captured on gas station surveillance cameras. Police are asking anyone who knows who she may be to call the Sheriff's Office at (618) 692-0871 or (618) 296-3000 for the anonymous tip line.
Before you buy or sell anything on Craigslist, use these tips to stay safe:
- Always meet somewhere in public, never meet in a secluded place or invite strangers into your home.
- Tell a friend or family member where you are going and what you are doing.
- See if someone can accompany you when you make the exchange.
- Don't forget to take your phone in case of an emergency.
- Trust your instincts. If something smells fishy, it probably is.
- You can also use the Qwillo app to suggest up to 10 safe and public places, like a police station or coffee shop, to meet and make your exchange.