karl_lembke (karl_lembke) wrote,
karl_lembke
karl_lembke

Craigs List Hoax Ad

I guess I'm surprised this sort of thing doesn't happen more often.
At least with newspaper ads, or with most sites, the person placing an
ad has to leave identifying information.

Police offer amnesty to people who stole from Craigslist
hoax victim
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I guess I'm surprised this sort of thing doesn't happen more often.
At least with newspaper ads, or with most sites, the person placing an
ad has to leave identifying information.

<blockquote>Police offer amnesty to people who stole from Craigslist
hoax victim
<www.kgw.com/news-local/stories/kgw_032408_news_craigslist_hoax.1ffb2c9c
.html
<http://www.kgw.com/news-local/stories/kgw_032408_news_craigslist_hoax.1
ffb2c9c.html> >
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
By AP and kgw.com Staff

JACKSONVILLE, Ore. -- Police say belongings removed from a Southern
Oregon man's property have begun slowly reappearing at his home, a day
after a pair of hoax ads on Craigslist cost Robert Salisbury much of
what he owned.
And police said people who return the items voluntarily will not be
prosecuted.
The ads popped up Saturday afternoon, saying the owner of a Jacksonville
home was forced to leave the area suddenly and his belongings, including
a horse, were free for the taking, said Jackson County Sheriff's
Detective Sgt. Colin Fagan.
But the ads were a hoax. Robert Salisbury had no plans to leave.
The independent contractor was at Emigrant Lake when he got a call from
a woman who had stopped by his house to claim his horse.
On his way home he stopped a truck loaded down with his work ladders,
lawn mower and weed eater.
"I informed them I was the owner, but they refused to give the stuff
back," Salisbury said. "They showed me the Craigslist printout and told
me they had the right to do what they did."
The driver sped away after rebuking Salisbury. On his way home he
spotted other cars filled with his belongings.
Once home he was greeted by close to 30 people rummaging through his
barn and front porch.
The trespassers, armed with printouts of the ad, tried to brush him off.
"They honestly thought that because it appeared on the Internet it was
true," Salisbury said. "It boggles the mind."
Jacksonville police and Jackson County sheriff's deputies arrived but by
then several cars packed with Salisbury's property had fled.
He turned some license plate numbers over to police. By late Monday, s
ome people who learned of the hoax began to return items taken from the
home. Authorities weren't able to say how much or what had been
returned, but did say that by late Monday afternoon, items were
"starting to piling up" in Salisbury's driveway.
Michelle Easley had seen the ad that claimed Salisbury's horse had been
declared abandoned by the sheriff's department and was free to a good
home.
"I can't stand to see a horse suffer so I drove out there and got her,"
Easley said. "The horse didn't look abandoned. She is in good shape for
being 32 years old."
But it looked odd, so she left a note on Salisbury's door explaining the
ad. She then decided to call to make sure the ad was legitimate when the
second similar ad appeared.
"I feel bad because I was a part of it," Easley said. "It felt right to
call the police."
Fagan praised Easley's honestly but said prosecution was likely for
anybody caught with Salisbury's property.
Officers were still contacting people who were seen leaving Salisbury's
house with his stuff. If they return the taken items, no charges will be
filed. But people who don't return what they took may face charges.
Items can be returned with no questions asked, Fagan said.
Detectives have contacted Craigslist's legal team to try to trace the
ad.
Meanwhile, Salisbury could not even relax on his porch swing -- someone
took it. </blockquote>
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