Do you use Craigslist to purchase or sell items?
Many people in Detroit and the metro area have bought and sold items through the website, Craigslist, and they may not have been aware of how much danger they could be in.
The City of Novi’s website reports that according to a 2010 study, Craigslist had approximately 50 million users. It also states that Craigslist has been linked with 330 crimes, 12 murders, and 105 robberies or assaults in the United States.
In an article by the Detroit News, Craigslist is also a place many people are selling stolen cars. Only when the recent buyer brings the car to a Secretary of State office for the title transfer and license plates do they realize that the car was stolen.
Craigslist Cannot Be Held Responsible…
Craigslist is what is known as a facilitator of commerce according to the City of Novi and cannot be held responsible for what happens amongst users.
To help keep you safe during transactions, police stations across Metro Detroit are allowing you to conduct your transactions in their parking lots.
Conducting Craigslist Business at the Police Station
According to a Detroit News article, Sterling Heights announced that Craigslist and other online buyers can conduct business in the Police Department’s lobby and parking lot.
The Novi Police Station is also has offered their parking lot for transactions.
Both Southfield and Ferndale will soon be offering safe havens as well. The Troy Police Station is also listed by the Detroit News as offering a safe place for transactions.
Sargent Baron Brown of the Ferndale Police Department said, “We want to stand by without standing by. Through the years, we have always encouraged people to meet here when it comes to Craigslist.”
It has also been reported that many police stations are installing ATMs for safety reasons.
The idea is that most criminals will not conduct business in the parking lot of a police station.
Police officers will not be present during the transaction and will not participate in the transaction or offer legal advice or help settle any disputes.
Safety Tips When Using Craigslist
Whether it’s Craigslist or another website, here are some safety tips offered by the Detroit News and the City of Novi when selling items.
- Accept only cash or a cashier’s check.
- Conduct transactions during the weekdays and during the day.
- Do not go alone.
- Never accept up-front payments.
- Meet at one of the police stations listed in this article or a well-lit location when surveillance cameras.
- Only conduct transactions with local buyers.
- Do not go to someone’s house or allow someone to come to your home.
- Trust your instincts.
Police Stations Offering or Soon to Offer Safe Havens in Metro Detroit
Sterling Heights Police Department
40333 Dodge Park Rd,
Sterling Heights, MI 48313
Novi Police Department
45125 W 10 Mile Rd,
Novi, MI 48375
Phone: (248) 348-7100
Ferndale Police Department
222 E 9 Mile Rd,
Ferndale, MI 48220
Phone: (248) 541-3650
Southfield Police Department
26000 Evergreen Rd,
Southfield, MI 48076
Troy Police Department
500 W Big Beaver Rd,
Troy, MI 48084
With all the stories in the media about Craigslist transactions going wrong, it is better to think safety first and meet in a safe place.
If you know a police department offering a safe place or safe haven for buyers and sellers of online websites like Craigslist, please leave that information in the comments section below.