INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — It seemed like a good deal.
A 16-year-old boy put his tennis shoes online for sale. He used an app called Offer Up. Shortly after posting his shoes, he got a buyer. In fact, the person was willing to pay more than what the shoes were worth. Except there was one catch: the teen had to drop off the shoes at an apartment on the west side.
The boy agreed and went to the apartment on the 6000 block of Cheshire Road. Once in the hallway of the building, he was instantly greeted by three men in ski masks. One of the masked men held a rifle, while the other two suspects stood close to the victim. The men then took the victim’s shoes, cellphone, headphones and even keys to his home.
After the robbery, the men let the victim go.
“I was frightened, then I was angry. My son was not using his head by meeting up with these people,” said Lisa Turner, the victim’s mother.
Police have very few details on the suspects.
This case had eerie similarities to a deadly Craigslist investigation in 2013. On Dec.4 of that year, Sergeant First Class James Vester drove to an apartment complex on the west side of Indianapolis to buy an iPad he found on Craigslist. Once he arrived, he was shot and killed.
Two brothers Tryon and Tyshaune Kincade were arrested, charged and convicted in Vester’s murder. A judge later sentenced the two to long prison sentences.
24-Hour News 8 discovered there are several police departments in central Indiana that allow people to conduct their internet transactions at their headquarters. Some of those departments include the Zionsville, Westfield and Fishers police departments.
If you must meet someone in person to make a transaction, never go alone. Officers also suggest that you document names and phone numbers of the person you are scheduled to meet.
As for Turner, she has warned her Facebook friends to be careful when making private sales and purchases.
She adds her son is now more cautious, and he will now take safety precautions.
Call Crime Stoppers if you have any information in this investigation. You can start by calling 317-262-TIPS (8477).