Buyers looking for a good deal through Craigslist this holiday season may want to take some extra precaution after two men were robbed of $5,000 at gunpoint in Skokie on Nov. 8. The victims meet their suspect through a local ad on Craigslist.
The two men told police they were supposed to buy 10 Apple iPhone 5s, but were robbed after meeting the supposed seller, who went by the alias "Tyrone," police said.
The three met in the 9100 block of Ewing Avenue and introduced each other by shaking hands.
However, the deal went south when the seller pulled out a black semi-automatic pistol and said, “You have five seconds to give me the cash or I will shoot you,” according to a report from the Skokie police. The man then stole $5,000 in cash from the victims and fled the scene, police said.
The men told police that they were going to sell the phones on eBay for a profit of about $150 per phone.
No arrests have been made at this time, but police say they are continuing to investigate the incident.
Recent Craigslist scam -
In February, police responded to a battery complaint in the 4000 block of Oakton Street on Feb. 21. According to the report, the man purchased a used Honda for $6,000 through an ad on Craigslist. While the odometer said the car had 97,000 miles, the title stated it had more than 160,000, the report said.
This upset the buyer and a scuffle between the two ensued, police said. No charges were filed.
Some tips from the Skokie Police Department
- Do not invite strangers into your home.
- Insist on a public place meeting, such as a restaurant or coffee shop.
- Do not meet in a secluded place.
- Be especially careful when buying or selling high value items.
- Tell a friend or family member where you are going.
- Consider having a friend accompany you.
- And most importantly, trust your gut instinct. If a situation seems uncomfortable or “too good to be true,” then it probably is.