Hakeem Ferguson and Ezekiel Myrie were arrested for a internet sales robbery in Hartford that happened back in December. (Hartford police photos)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -
Police in Hartford said they've been investigating a number of internet transaction robberies that have taken place over the past few months.
They said the victims were lured to a specific location under the ruse of making a purchase that was agreed upon through a website called "OfferUp."
Police said the site operates like Craigslist. Incidents from that website were the reason they launched their "Safe Lot" program where buyers and sellers could safely conduct transactions in police-monitored lots, like the Public Safety Complex at 253 High St.
In the cases under investigation, none of the victims were Hartford residents. They were lured to the city. They came from as far away as Lawrence, MA.
The items stolen included vehicles, phones, wallets, money,
The suspects showed weapons like guns or knives during some of them.
"The trend is people come into the city, from out of town, unsuspecting, into the neighborhoods and they get robbed at gunpoint," said Hartford's Deputy Police Chief Brian Foley.
The incidents happened on:
Oct. 26 in Hartford north end. Cash was taken.
Dec. 6 at an apartment on Clark Street, involved a Playstation 4 and an Apple iWatch.
Jan. 13 at a recreational center lot. The seller lured victims in by advertising an Apple iPad. They were robbed of their purses and cash.
Jan. 20 at an unspecified location. A juvenile suspect stole a vehicle after luring the victim in with a sale of a PS4 and Apple iWatch.
Jan. 21 in Hartford's north end. A victim was carjacked under the pretense by buying a PS4 and an iPhone.
Feb. 2. A woman was carjacked by two suspects who posted an iPhone 6 that was for sale.
Feb. 11. Another PS4 advertisement led to the robbery of a victim from New Britain.
"Three of those have taken their cars. One time, an infant was in the car with the mother and grandmother in the car at the same time and they were burgled of all their items," Foley said.
Two suspects were arrested in the Dec. 6 incident. Hakeem Ferguson, 21, and 19-year-old Ezekiel Myrie were charged with first-degree robbery.
One suspect was identified in the Feb. 2 incident and a warrant is forthcoming, according to police.
The rest of the incidents remain under investigation.
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Tuesday, August 15 2017 7:46 PM EDT2017-08-15 23:46:25 GMT
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