Irving and Dent
2 Riverdale teens held in death of Lithonia man selling iPhone:
25-year-old Jevon Nathan Freeman of Lithonia, Georgia was allegedly shot and killed by 18-year-old Terrance Justin Dent of Riverdale, Georgia. Freeman had placed an ad on craigslist to sell his iPhone. Dent responded to the ad and when the two met to make the deal police say that Dent shot Freeman. Then Dent allegedly gave the gun to his 17-year-old cohort Latrel Irving. Nice friend. No honor among thieves and all that apparently. Dent has been charged with murder while Irving has been charged with possession of a weapon by a minor. Police say that Dent has admitted to the murder.
And once again people still think that craigslist is safe. I used to joke by referring to craigslist with a famous quote from Star Wars. The tagline of the old craigscrimelist site was that craigslist was an online hive of scum and villainy. While a little melodramatic the heart of that quote still applies to craigslist.
One of the arguments I get most is that crimes like this also happen with newspaper classifieds as well. I’ll tell you what. Compile those statistics from the last 6 years and then let’s compare notes. I’m confident that the craigslist numbers will dwarf anything related to the newspapers.
Homicide victim was lured by a Craigslist ad, police said:
Police in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, say that 44-year-old Rene Filsdelfo Levia-Archilla of Baltimore was lured to his death by a craigslist ad. Mr. Levia-Archilla and a friend of his were in Harmans, Maryland, to buy a car from a craigslist seller. Instead it turned out to be a robbery set up where Mr. Levia-Archilla was shot to death. His friend fled and survived. The suspect is still at large.
The suspect is being described as a white male, 30-40 years old, approximately 5-foot-10 with a medium to heavy build, black, crew cut style hair and a five o’clock shadow.
The suspect vehicle is described as a silver or white mid-size, four door sport utility vehicle (SUV). Anyone with information about this crime can contact Metro Crime Stoppers or the Anne Arundel County Police homicide unit at 410-222-3566 .
Like I’ve said previously I’ve lost count of how many murders have been perpetrated through craigslist. What gets me is craigslist does nothing to stop this and people are ok with it. When MySpace was at the height of its popularity people and lawmakers almost stormed the MySpace offices with pitchforks and torches over the kids who were being preyed upon by pedophiles. MySpace to its credit did everything within its power to curb the amount of predators on their site. Craigslist is basically saying “Eh, you just have to take your chances.”
I realize that the number of transactions that happen on craigslist that result in murders are a very small percentage, probably smaller that 1% of all craigslist transactions in the US. It still doesn’t change the fact that a few dozen people have been killed by using the website. A few dozen murders that no one seems to have a problem with, policy makers and media included and that’s the real shame of this.
Roth and Thomas
Arrests Made in “Craigslist Murder” of SoCal Father:
I originally posted about the craigslist murder of Rene Balbuena here. He was shot and killed on the streets of L.A. in front of his 15-year-old son. He was lured to his death by someone who was supposed to be selling him a cell phone.. Instead two people fired into Balbuena’s car, killing him and grazing his son.
The suspects were at large until late last week when 17-year-old Ryan Roth and 18-year-old Markell Thomas were arrested and charged with Balbuena’s murder. Police say that they both belong to a branch of the infamous Bloods gang and are allegedly connected with a series of craigslist armed robberies using the same M.O. Roth is being charged as an adult.
Here’s how police say it went down…
Thomas allegedly jumped in the backseat of Balbuena’s car and pointed a gun at the victim’s 15-year-old son, demanding property.
Balbuena stepped out the car and was shot multiple times in the torso, allegedly by Roth, who was waiting outside the car.
Such a pointless tragedy. Roth would not be eligible for the death penalty since he’s under 18.
Father Killed in Front of His Son While Responding to Craigslist Ad:
Rene Balbuena and his 15-year-old son were sitting in his car on the streets of Los Angeles waiting for a craigslist seller who was going to sell them a cellphone. Instead two men came up to the car and started shooting killing Balbuena and grazing his son. As of this posting the suspects were still at large.
This murder snapped a 10 day streak of 10 murder free days in Los Angeles.
I’ll post more details as they come available and since this happened in a media-centric city like L.A. maybe this will shed some much-needed light on the inherent dangers of doing business on craigslist.
Police: Man murdered after meeting suspects via craigslist to sell truck:
Sheriff: Craigslist deal led to murder of CofC student:
Williams and Scott
25-year-old Alex Apps of Beaufort, South Carolina did what they say you should do when doing business on craigslist. Apps was trying to sell his truck and he met the potential buyers in public, during the day and even brought his mom with him. None of that prevented him from being killed and having his body dumped in nearby Mount Pleasant.
His alleged attackers are 20-year-old Isaac Williams and 19-year-old Jquan Scott who police say met Apps in Charleston to discuss selling the truck. Apps told his mother to go home since the pair weren’t buying the truck that day. During a test drive Scott allegedly shot Apps in the head before the pair dumped his body. When Scott was arrested he was driving Apps truck according to police.
In one of the articles I linked to local police gave some tips on staying safe when selling stuff on craigslist. However I can do one better. If you don’t want to get killed selling something on craigslist then DON’T SELL ANYTHING ON CRAIGSLIST. Yes I know the amount of violent crime that happens through craigslist is a very small percentage of the millions of transactions that take place on craigslist. I still don’t care for those odds.
UPDATE: Suspect in custody after Carver High School shooting:
Carver High School Shooting: Suspect In Custody In Winston-Salem, North Carolina:
Today a shooting occurred at Carver High School in Winston-Salem, North Carolina during a fire drill. A 15-year-old male student was stuck in the neck and shoulder but is said to have non-life threatening injuries.
The shooting took place outside of the school during the aforementioned fire drill.
The shooter is in custody but no further details about them have been given at this time.
If I had to hazard a guess I would say that this sounds like a heat of the moment kind of shooting rather than something that was planned but we’ll see how true that is once more details become publicly available.
UPDATE 9/3/2013: The suspect’s name is Christopher Lamont Richardson Jr. and reports say that there was an ongoing issue between Richardson and the victim. What that issue was has not been made public, to my knowledge, yet.
Man shot and killed during Craigslist sale:
Man reportedly shot during botched DeKalb Craigslist deal:
As if the DeKalb County section of Atlanta didn’t have enough problems to deal with yesterday an unidentified 60-year-old man was shot and killed during a craigslist deal gone bad.
The details have not been forthcoming but reports say that the victim was allegedly meeting with potential buyers for a cell phone he was trying to sell. Police seem to think that this was a botched robbery attempt. No suspect has been apprehended at this time.
With the lack of details I can only comment on this, craigslist is dangerous. I realize that craigslist has millions of transactions that happen without any malice but has an inordinate amount of transactions that end up just like this one.
Willow Grove man arrested in Craigslist murder:
Willow Grove man arrested in ‘Craigslist murder’:
Police Release More Details in Alleged Craigslist Killing:
Once again I find myself having to apologize for the tardiness of my posts. As I mentioned in my previous post I’ve been having some personal issues and blogging has been the last thing on my mind. However that should be no excuse. As bad as I have it there are people who have it worse.
For example a few Friday nights ago in Philadelphia 27-year-old Daniel Cooke, of Williamstown,New Jersey went to Philadelphia with a few friends. Not unheard of as Philly is a known nightspot for some of those in South Jersey. However Daniel was not going to Philly for a night on the town. Daniel and his friends went to the West Oak Lane section of Philadelphia to look at an ATV that had been advertised on craigslist. That’s where police say that he met up with 23-year-old Thomas Coffee.
Witnesses say that Coffee walked Daniel down the street and when was out of eyesight Coffer allegedly robbed Cooke and shot him in the face. Cooke died from his wounds at the scene. There was never any ATV according to police. Investigators say that this was a premeditated attack perpetrated by Coffee in order to lure and rob someone. Coffee is said to have a lengthy criminal record.
Even though Daniel Cooke may have made several mistakes in what he thought was a good faith business transaction Craigslist will try to tell you that there are safe ways to conduct business through craigslist. There aren’t. It doesn’t matter if you have friends with you or if you meet the seller or buyer during the day. I have posted story after story about people being attacked in what a lot of people would think are reasonably safe. That just means the safer you try to be the more brazen the criminal will try to act.
Do yourself a favor and avoid craigslist. They have lost the war to the criminals not that they ever put up much of a fight.
Woods and Williams
Coast Guardsman Murder Case Sent to Grand Jury:
Here are all the players in our little drama.
Shaniah Woods: A transgender prostitute advertising on Backpage.
Christopher Williams: The pimp and/or bodyguard.
Robert Andrew Roberts: Coast Guardsmen from Alabama and alleged murder victim.
Back in March Mr. Roberts responded to a Backpage ad for Woods and the pair met at a hotel. She supposedly asked for ID but instead Roberts allegedly started groping her. Then the pair went out to a vehicle where Williams was where they discussed price. For some unknown reason a scuffle broke out and Roberts was shot to death with his own gun by Williams.
The suspects are claiming self-defense.
This story shows a number of things. The first is you are taking your life into your hands by using prostitutes. Secondly, if you engage in a life of prostitution and sex trafficking you may find yourself on the wrong end of a murder charge. And lastly Backpage made money on this murder.
Man Acquitted in Craigslist Escort Death:
Texas Man, Ezekiel Gilbert, Acquitted For Killing Craigslist Escort Lenora Ivie Frago:
The other day I brought you the story of the 2009 shooting death of 23-year-old Lenora Ivie Frago of San Antonio, Texas. I can’t call it a murder anymore but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Ms. Frago was working as a craigslist prostitute and had her services solicited by 30-year-old Ezekiel Gilbert. He paid her $150 but she refused to have sex with him. To get back his money Gilbert shot her. She was kept alive by life support for months until her family finally decided to take her off of it. If you’ve ever had family in that kind of situation you know how difficult that process can be.
Gilbert’s attorney argued that Gilbert used reasonable force to reclaim his property in this case the $150. I thought there was no way a jury could buy this but they did. Earlier today Gilbert was acquitted of the charges against him.
The Texas law allows citizens to use such force to “retrieve stolen property at night” or to hinder a burglar from escaping the scene of a crime during the night, as long as the person “reasonably” thinks that they have no other means of protecting their property.
So they don’t take into consideration that this shooting was done during the commission of another crime, the crime of prostitution. Last time I checked that was still illegal in Texas. If this was a drug deal gone bad would Gilbert have been acquitted? I doubt it. This is why no one cares about human trafficking. All its victims are seen as nothing more than human trash who deserve what they got.
Obviously Ms. Frago had a family that cared about her and all because some loser who couldn’t get laid on his own wanted his precious 150 bucks back she had to lie brain-dead for months while this jackhole is able to carry on with his life. Normally when a person is acquitted of a crime I remove all traces of it from my website, but not this one. This one needs to remain in order to show the injustice that was done and how poorly our society thinks of women like Ms. Frago who deserve better.
So if there are any aspiring serial killers out there head to Texas. You can kill all the hookers you want and just claim you were reclaiming your property.