The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department – Lake Elsinore Station will begin offering the public parking lot for use as a community meet up location where individuals conducting internet purchase transactions can meet. The Lake Elsinore Station parking lot provides an alternative to meeting a stranger at a private residence or unfamiliar location. Signage is located next to parking stalls designated for the exchanges. The location is also available be used for families with visitation rights to make a custodial exchange.
As internet person to person sales have grown, so has crime related to them to include assaults, robberies, and other thefts. Not every buyer or seller online, is someone who is true with their intent. There is a certain criminal element that capitalizes upon the inexperience of others. This type of criminal will typically agree to meeting in an area the criminal is familiar with. When the unsuspecting party arrives, the criminal will seize the item or take it by force.
The Lake Elsinore Station’s goal is to reduce victimization by this type of predator. By providing this location, the risk of victimization is greatly reduced. The sign was generously donated by OfferUp, who partners with law enforcement in an effort to reduce crime.
Do not meet in a secluded place or invite strangers into your home.The Department is not responsible for the value, authenticity or legitimacy of the transactions. The use of the parking lot is an alternative and safer exchange location. The Lake Elsinore Station is located at: 333 Limited Avenue, Lake Elsinore, CA (951) 245-3300.
Additional internet transaction safety tips:
- Be especially careful buying/selling high value items.
- Tell a friend or family member where you’re going.
- Take your cell phone with you.
- Consider having a friend accompany you.
- Never purchase anything online using your credit card from a site that does not have SSL (Secure Sockets Layer).
- Ask a lot of questions.
- Avoid meetings during hours of darkness.
- Trust your instincts.
- If in danger, call 911.