Three Craigslist robberies reported in Akron in ten days

Gunman luring victims to same street each time
Posted at 9:49 PM, Aug 09, 2017

Akron Police are investigating three separate Craigslist robberies that happened in just ten days.

The suspect told sellers to show up to the same area each time in the 1400 block of Alphada Avenue, and each time, shoved a gun in their face and demanded the phone they were planning to sell.

For one mother of two, who asked not to be identified for her safety, fear mixed with sadness at just how young the gunman appeared. She was robbed around 6 p.m. Tuesday.

“He looked like a child to me,” she said. “He stuck a gun in our face and took us for a phone.”

The woman was trying to sell her Galaxy S8 phone through a Craiglist ad to get extra cash for back-to-school shopping.

“She wants a pink backpack for school this year,” she said. “She’s 14. I wanted to get her a pink backpack and he took that.”

The woman said she thought she did everything right and was vigilant before the exchange — agreeing to meet in a public place near a busy apartment complex in broad daylight. She even took a neighbor along.

“He walked to the passenger side of the car and the next thing I know, there is a gun in our face saying, ‘Gimme that phone,’ and he grabbed the phone and was gone in no time,” she said.

The entire exchange lasted only seconds and the gunman took off running.

The other two cases occurred on July 30 and August 8. Victims describe a similar scenario — the man plans to meet up at Alphada Avenue, points a gun in their face, and takes off with their phone.

The Akron Police department does not have a specified safe exchange zone. There is one at the Summit County Sheriff's office.