SHORTLY before 9 p.m. on January 4, officers from the Richmond RCMP responded to the 9600-block of Alberta Road for a report of a robbery. The victim, a 38-year old man from Richmond, was selling a luxury watch on Craigslist and arranged to meet the prospective buyer. When the “buyer” arrived, instead of purchasing the watch, he allegedly robbed the seller at gunpoint.
Richmond RCMP say they have exhausted all avenues of investigation and are now releasing a composite sketch in hopes that someone will be able to identify the suspect.
The suspect is described as a white male, medium build, wearing a camouflage hoody, brown or gray jeans and a baseball cap, and having a full sleeve tattoo on his right arm.
The suspect was last seen fleeing the scene in a dark coloured, newer model Ford SUV.
Anyone with information on this case or the suspect is asked to contact Constable K. Rao of the Richmond RCMP General Investigation Section (GIS) at 604-278-1212. Quote file # 2019-471.
Should you wish to remain anonymous, contact CrimeStoppers by phone at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
MEANWHILE, Richmond RCMP reminded the community to take certain precautions when embarking on a transaction that can help to ensure a positive outcome for both the buyer and seller. Whether you are an avid user of Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, WeChat or other online sites, these tips can assist everyone:
- Arrange a meeting place that is very public. Some suggestions might be a shopping mall food court, popular coffee shop, or your local police detachment. These places generally have security video. The lobby of the Richmond RCMP Detachment can be used as a “safe haven” for this purpose. Check with your local police detachment to see if they also offer a similar area.
- If you are planning to buy / sell a big-ticket item, it is a good idea to bring along a friend. They can provide support and an additional set of eyes and ears.
- Always strive to get valid contact information from the seller or buyer prior to setting up a meet. A valid phone number is preferable.
- Be prepared to walk away from a deal or transaction if something does not feel right.
“Not every transaction can go according to plan. However, we wish to help consumers mitigate their risk. We offer these tips based on real-life situations. With a little extra preparation, the bargain hunting experience can be a more positive experience,” said Cpl. Dennis Hwang.