York Regional Police is issuing online marketplace safety tips ahead of the holiday shopping season, after investigators arrested two youths and are seeking two more following a robbery in Richmond Hill.
A man had arranged to meet with a youth who was going to purchase his game console on Wednesday, Oct. 25 at approximately 7 p.m. As he got out of his vehicle, three suspects emerged from bushes nearby and began punching him.
The first youth instructed the others to get the game console, police said. However, they were unable to enter the passenger side of the victim’s vehicle because the doors were locked. The victim was eventually able to fend off the attack, got back into his vehicle and drove away.
Through investigation, two youths were identified and are charged with various offences, including robbery, assault, criminal negligence and theft under $5,000.
Investigators are still looking for two youth suspects and are asking anyone with information to come forward.
Police are offering this advice on how to protect yourself if buying or selling goods online:
Buyers and sellers
- Choose a safe meeting place, opt for well-lit, busy locations
- Bring a friend
- Before handing over money, inspect the item thoroughly to ensure it matches the listing description
- If paying with cash, bring the exact amount and avoid displaying large sums
- Be wary of last-minute changes to the meeting location or time
- If something makes you feel uncomfortable, trust your instincts and consider cancelling the meeting
Anyone with information is asked to call the York Regional Police #2 District Criminal Investigations Bureau at 1-866-876-5423, ext. 7241, or contact Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS, or leave an anonymous tip online at www.1800222tips.com.