INDIANAPOLIS - Two Indianapolis residents became sudden victims of armed robberies after police said they answered ads for electronics on Craigslist.
Both holdups were reported within hours of each other on Friday, although each attack appears to be unrelated.
The first holdup reported on Friday ended with a woman being slashed with a knife and her car being crashed into a pole in the 4400 block of East 62nd Street.
The victim told Indianapolis Metropolitan Police that she found an online ad for an iPhone 5, prompting her to call a phone number to arrange a meeting. The supposed seller agreed to take $400 for the iPhone if she would meet him on East 62nd on Thursday afternoon around 1 p.m.
The woman told police that her mother drove the car to the meeting, where the man jumped into the back seat of the car for the transaction.
Officers said the man displayed a blue bag that appeared to contain a phone, but he suddenly pulled a knife and placed it against the woman’s face, slashing her under her nose.
Her mother panicked in the driver’s seat, police said, causing the car to careen into a carport support and then slam into an electric pole.
In the police report, officers write that the man “demanded his $400” and ended up grabbing the cash and running into the nearby Williamsburg Apartment complex. He was never found.
The woman declined medical treatment for her knife wound, police said. The rental car that her mother was driving sustained approximately $600 in damage from the crash, police said.
The second attack was reported around 10:30 Friday morning on Redskin Drive, off East 30th Street on the east side of Indianapolis.
An IMPD officer who was responding to another call reported he was flagged down by a man who said he had just been robbed at gunpoint.
He told police he had answered an ad that was posted on Craigslist three days earlier, agreeing to meet the seller of a Retna Macbook computer.
Police said he called a phone number listed in the Craigslist posting, and ended up agreeing to trade his 2011 Macbook and $600 cash for the nicer computer.
He said the man identified himself as “Zach” in the phone call, and the two agreed to meet at the Stoney Brook Apartments on Redskin Drive around 10:15 Friday morning.
When the victim pulled into the parking lot, he said the supposed seller jumped into his car with a briefcase and pulled out a gun.
Police said the robber pointed the gun and demanded his money, his computer and his cell phone. He then jumped out of the car and ran away. Police were unable to locate him and they found no surveillance video from surrounding businesses.
In the second attack, the robber wore a gray hooded sweatshirt with a white scarf covering most of his face.
The stolen computer was valued at $700 and the phone was valued at $200. Coupled with the cash, police said the victim lost $1,500.
He was not injured.