DA: Marketplace app robberies on the rise in Erie County

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Law enforcement officials in Buffalo are trying to sound the alarm over a trend they’ve noticed. It’s one they’re worried could eventually cost someone their life.

They say “marketplace app robberies” are on the rise. They are cases in which a person agrees to buy or sell something online. When they meet in person to make the exchange, a robbery occurs.

Erie County District Attorney John Flynn joined Buffalo Police Department Captain Jeff Rinaldo Wednesday to share details about three local cases his office is prosecuting right now.

“It could occur either way,” Flynn pointed out. “You could be the victim if you try to sell the stuff online. You could be the victim if you try to buy the stuff online.”

“Always do these transactions in a public place,” Rinaldo advised. “Never bring somebody to your house who is a stranger. Make sure you’re doing it in public places. Make sure you’re doing it in well-lit areas.”

Rinaldo added if you become victimized, don’t fight. He recommends just giving up your money or merchandise, and calling police once you are safe.

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