With the popularity of buying and selling items on the Internet, involving sale sites, social media and email lists, one thing seems to have been swept under the rug: safety. In an effort to keep its residents safer in the process, the Lansdale Borough Police Department has set up a solution.
“E- Commerce has exploded in terms of its popularity and while most transactions are conducted in a legitimate fashion, there is that element out there that will use sites such as Craigslist to hurt and defraud others,” said the Borough’s Facebook page post on Wednesday. “While we will not get involved in brokering a deal between private parties, we hope that our residents will use our location to conduct legal transactions under safer conditions.”
In order to do so, the Lansdale Police Chief, Robert McDyre, has announced that he wants to do something about it.
“[The department] will open up the police department’s front parking lot off of Vine Street to Lansdale Borough residents who wish to conduct Craigslist transactions and/or transactions from other online markets,” said McDyre.
Despite the safer location for meet-ups, the chief still warned others of the concerns involved with meeting strangers.
“Preferred hours for transactions are during daylight hours and sellers/buyers should reconsider conducting business with anyone who refuses to meet near a police station,” he said.
There have been stories in the past involving participants being robbed, kidnapped and even murdered. While many sales take place safely, the LBPD hopes that hosting a secure site, in-view of police, will help to keep others safe.
“We have all seen the news accounts from around the country involving the violence and fraud that can occur during these interactions,” said McDyre. “Most people don’t feel comfortable meeting at their homes and going to a park or parking lot can also be dangerous.”
The new lot opening is just one way the local department aims to keep its community safe.
“Our residents’ safety is our top priority and our parking lot, which has video surveillance, is available for them to conduct their transactions,” said Chief McDyre.