I’ve never liked the stories in the media when someone finds their stolen stuff on craigslist and then takes it back from the thief. Usually, the police aren’t involved and untrained people are dealing with potentially dangerous criminals. Sadly, that is what happened in Garland, Texas, a couple of weeks ago.
26-year-old Michael Ryan Love was said to have found his stolen camera equipment on OfferUp. When he approached the seller he took a number of people with him. The seller returned the camera to him but an argument ensued and a shootout followed leaving Love and another man dead.
Both craigslist and OfferUp are notorious for thieves trying to sell stolen goods on their platforms. If something of yours is stolen in any kind of burglary it’s a great idea to look on these platforms for your items. However, under no circumstances should you approach these thieves on your own. Always notify your local law enforcement. They may not work at the speed you wish they would. They may not even be able to get your stuff back, but no gadget or bicycle or any other material good is worth putting your life in mortal danger.
A 19-year-old man from Wichita, Kansas, was shot in the shoulder recently during an OfferUp sale of shoes. Two men are said to have driven up to the victim’s home and the victim got in the men’s car. After money was exchanged one of the suspects drew a gun in a robbery attempt. In the ensuing struggle, the victim was shot in the shoulder. He was able to escape and call 911. His injuries were said to be minor, as far as being shot goes. Police say they have identified the suspects and are currently searching for them.
Outside of using OfferUp in the first place, the victim made two grave mistakes with his transaction. The first was allowing the suspects to come to his home. The second mistake was getting in the car with the two men.
If you insist on using an app like OfferUp, always make the transaction at your local police departments. Hardly a day goes by where some police station in the country is opening some form of safe zone for these kind of transactions.
20-year-old David A. Williams of Kansas City, Missouri, was arrested for allegedly robbing and carjacking a man in Independence, Missouri, and shooting his 15-year-old accomplice. Police say that the victim set up a hook-up on Snapchat, but when the victim arrived at the meeting place Williams was said to have robbed the victim with the help of the 15-year-old girl who the victim supposedly set up the date with. However, when the victim tried to flee, Williams opened fire but instead of hitting his victim he hit his accomplice instead, striking her in the arm and leg.
Back in the MySpace days when these robberies happened, I used to say ‘The hot girl from MySpace really doesn’t want you.’ That still stands even today, just replace MySpace with your social media of choice.
While I’m glad this guy was caught, I’m curious if the victim was aware the girl was 15 before the meeting. It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve heard of someone trying to rob or blackmail a creeper thinking they wouldn’t go to police.
I originally posted about the murder of Daniel Carlos here. The 32-year-old father and husband was shot and killed in a San Leandro, California, parking lot after trying to sell his iPhone to someone from LetGo. Now, arrests have been made in Mr. Carlos’ murder.
18-year-olds Marcus Fortune and Jason Patton have been arrested and charged with Mr. Carlos’ murder. Fortune is believe to have allegedly pulled the trigger while Patton was the driver. Fortune is even said to have admitted to his involvement in the crime although that is not a guilty plea. He says that this was supposed to be a ‘take and go’.
Again, this crime took place in a public place in broad daylight and Mr. Carlos was still killed for something as minor as an iPhone. The old rules no longer apply as criminals are willing to take any number of lives in order to get whatever shiny trinket is being offered up. Use your local police station to complete any transaction of this nature.
Back in mid-November, 32-year-old Daniel Carlos of Redwood City, California was shot and killed in San Leandro, California. He was shot and killed by after meeting someone who was willing to buy his iPhone through the LetGo app. Police say there were multiple suspects, and as far as I can tell they are still at large. Mr. Carlos left behind a wife and 5-year-old daughter.
LetGo is starting to rack up a disturbing body count in a short amount of time. If I had to hazard a guess I’d say they might even break craigslist’s record in a shorter amount of time.
In Henderson, Nevada, 53-year-old Wendell Melton is accused of allegedly shooting and killing his 14-year-old son, Giovanni Melton. Giovanni was openly gay, and by most accounts was well-liked by his friends and classmate. Many of the headlines on this story are saying that Wendell Melton killed Giovanni because he was gay, however, it’s not that clear just yet. That’s not to say that Wendell Melton isn’t a Grade-A monster.
The reason Giovanni’s sexual orientation has been making headlines is because Giovanni’s foster mother said Wendell Melton hated his son for being gay. According to the foster mother, Wendell Melton once pulled a gun on his son after finding Giovanni with his boyfriend. The foster mother believes that Wendell Melton “would rather have a dead son than a gay son.” Wendell Melton claims he shot his son in self-defense, however, police have said Wendell Melton changed his story several times. Police also think Wendell Melton drew his weapon before he was in any alleged danger.
So as of right now, the motive in the shooting is not 100% conclusive, but for the sake of argument let’s say Giovanni was shot by his father for being gay. I am close in age to Wendell Melton. There was a time when I was much younger when I was a legitimate homophobe. As I gained more experience in the world and experienced different cultures and lifestyles I realized something. How does someone being gay affect you? It doesn’t, unless you’re a close-minded bigot. To all the men who feel the need to put up some kind of super macho persona, having a gay son doesn’t make you any less of a man. As a matter of fact, if you have gay children and accept them, that makes you more of a man and more of a father.