3 arrested in Facebook robberies
Updated 7:57 p.m.
ALBANY Two men were robbed after they tried to sell sneakers on Facebook, police said.
Officers arrested three Albany residents in connection with the robberies.
In the first case, police charged a 14-year-old with felony robbery. Because of his age, his name was not released.
In the second case, Devon Davis, 18, of Albany was charged with felony robbery and possession of stolen property, a misdemeanor.
Justin Feliciano, 20, of Albany, was also charged with possession of stolen property, a misdemeanor. Police alleged that Feliciano parked nearby to help Davis escape with the stolen sneakers.
In the first case, police said a teenager was robbed after he agreed to meet a customer at Albany High School at 8:30 p.m. on March 22.
The customer — a stranger who had said on Facebook that he wanted to buy the teen’s sneakers — pulled out a gun and took the sneakers, as well as the teen’s cellphone.
The two teens met through a Facebook site intended to facilitate merchandise sales.
The second robbery occurred on April 2. A man reported that he, too, was robbed by a stranger he met through a Facebook sales site.
Police said the victim agreed to meet Davis at Westland Hills Park, off of Colvin Avenue, at 8:30 p.m. But Davis said he’d forgotten his money and asked the seller to follow him to another address.
There, Davis allegedly punched the victim, stole the sneakers and fled.
Police announced the arrests along with advice for purchasing items through websites.
They said buyers and sellers should always meet in public places — like an open coffee house — where their would be plenty of witnesses. They should also never go to a secondary location once they’ve met at a public spot.
Police also said both sides should bring friends with them when they meet to conduct a purchase. As for buyers, police said they should back out of any transaction in which the sellers won’t provide their phone number, their address, and their name. They should also back out if the seller can’t answer many questions about the product.