Facebook-Arranged “Car Sale” Turns Into Armed Robbery

warningA man in Maryland received a rude surprise this week when he reached out to a man on Facebook selling a car. The two men arranged to meet and discuss it, but things did not go as planned for the would-be buyer. Instead of walking away with a new vehicle, he was robbed at gunpoint by a second individual suspected of being in league with the supposed Facebook car seller.

The victim met with a man driving a silver Acura with a temporary Delaware tag, and while the two were talking a second man walked up behind the victim with a handgun and demanded his wallet. According to Anne Arundel County Police, the man that the victim had been talking to fled on foot while the suspect with the handgun jumped into the first man’s Acura and sped off.

Of course, when you’re arranging online to meet with someone and buy an item, safety is of the utmost concern. Don’t go to the meeting alone, only accept cash (and not large sums) or a cashier’s check and only meet on weekdays so you can contact your bank if something goes wrong. Many police departments encourage citizens to use the station parking lot as a meet up place. It’s also a good idea to remain skeptical of any individual you meet on Facebook. Social media may make us feel connected, but it’s also all too easy to use to exploit trusting individuals.