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Albany PD arrest 3 for Facebook robberies
ALBANY -- Police arrested three people in connection with two robberies following interactions on a Facebook sales site.
A teen reported a robbery on March 22, telling officers that he had posted a pair of sneakers for sale on a Facebook sales site and agreed to meet a potential buyer at Albany High School. The victim told police that the buyer displayed what appeared to be a black handgun and demanded the victim's property, fleeing the scene with the sneakers and the victim's cell phone.
The suspect, a 14-year-old boy, was arrested six days later and charged with 1st Degree Robbery.
On April 3, a man reported a robbery, stating that he posted a pair of sneakers on a Facebook sales site and agreed to meet a potential buyer at Westland Hills Park. The victim told police that when he and a friend arrived at the park, the suspect told them that he forgot his money and asked them to follow him to an address on Davis Avenue. While at the home on Davis Avenue, the suspect allegedly punched the victim's friend in the face and stole the sneakers, fleeing the scene.
18-year-old Devon Davis was arrested and charged with 3rd Degree Robbery and 5th Degree Criminal Possession of Stolen Property.
20-year-old Justin Feliciano was charged with 5th Degree Criminal Possession of a weapon, after police determined during their investigation that he played a role in the incident.
Police are remind residents of the following safety tips regarding online sales ads:
- Check out the seller's information: Ask for a phone number and an address. Take that information, and check the names of the seller online to find out who you are dealing with.
- Ask questions: Ask as many questions as you can before going to buy the product. If the seller can't answer your questions, there is a good chance that he doesn't actually have the product and could be setting you up.
- Don't buy from sellers who only list an email address: This is usually an indicator that the seller has something to hide.
- Meet in a public place - Criminals don't want witnesses; meeting in a public place like a coffee shop or cafe can help ensure your safety.
- If it sounds too good to be true it probably is: Trust your instincts. If the deal sounds too good to be true you are better off passing it up.
- Never go to a second location - If you arrive at the predetermined meeting place and the seller asks to go to another place, you should be concerned and leave.
- Don't go alone. Always bring someone with you when meeting a potential buyer.
- Show up early: If you are meeting in a public location, show up early and scope out the area. If you have even the slightest concern that something seems out of place, trust your instincts and leave.