INDIANAPOLIS - Police are investigating how social media played a role into a recent armed robbery and carjacking on the city’s northwest side.
Police say that the 24-year-old victim and the suspect met on Facebook, and the relationship blossomed, or so the victim thought. They decided to have a face-to-face meeting at 1 a.m. near the corner of Corwyn road and Eagledale Drive.
Unbeknownst to the male victim, two men wearing ski masks, one of them with a handgun, were there to meet him.
"He was robbed. His belongings were taken. His car was taken and he was quite humiliated. It's an example of what can happen when you don't know who's behind those key strokes," Officer Chris Wilburn said.
After the robbery and carjacking, the victim went door to door throughout the neighborhood.
Justin Penelton answered the knock at his door.
"It's pretty dark on that side of the street. There's a light over there, and I guess they were out of the light when all this happened. Yeah, they took his car. He didn't have any pants on. He had his boxers on. So, I'm sure that they took his clothes too," Penelton said.
Social media is a powerful tool, one that police have increasingly witnessed as an avenue for criminal activity.
"You have to be cognizant of the dangers that lie, these hidden dangers, and this obviously was one of those of that he might not have been schooled in," Wilburn said.
Police said they hope to solve the crime through the use of search warrants to trace back the IP address of the Facebook user.
Follow Jack Rinehart on Twitter: @jackrinehart6