Kankakee, IL – Twelve hours is all it took, from first message to final meetup. Unfortunately, a Kankakee man “LetGo” of more than what he bargained for Tuesday morning.
The man, who asked his name be withheld by Country Herald for safety reasons, filed a police report with the City of Kankakee on Tuesday, was asked to bring more than just a phone to the meeting after a notification from a potential buyer/alleged robber came through that read: “okay,I got my check and I’m stuck with 400$ will you have change?”
The phone had been listed in the App for $350.00. “no I don’t have change. I can stop by the Atm.” The victim/seller replied. Shortly after, the man was allegedly robbed at gunpoint. The incident was reported at 10:35 am outside of a home on South Osborn.
The victim proceeded to drive a few streets over to Bourbonnais St, where he then called the police.
While it’s not common with all selling platforms such as eBay and Mercari, platforms like Let Go, Offer Up and Craigslist rely on residents physically meeting up in person to exchange sales and goods rather than rely on digital means.
In recent years, Police Departments across the country have joined in a recent trend in proving a “safe haven” for online sales, more than often in the station’s lobby. Departments in Cook County, including the Orland Park Police, recently started educating the public of the “safe haven” practices.
“I’m aware of meeting spots now and definitely learned my lesson and blame myself for this. Just glad it wasn’t worse.” The victim told Country Herald on Wednesday.
Police recommend when meeting someone for the first time, please remember to:
- Insist on a public meeting place like a cafe.
- Do not meet in a secluded place, or invite strangers into your home.
- Be especially careful when buying/selling high-value items.
- Tell a friend or family member where you’re going.
- Take your cell phone along if you have one.
- Consider having a friend accompany you.
- Trust your instincts.
As for the victim, he says, “I definitely plan on deleting the apps and in the future if I do decide to sell something I’m going to a meeting spot and will have someone with me that is armed.”
No injuries were reported. No arrests have been made.