Craigslist can turn deadly if you follow the wrong ad. All too many have learned this the hard way, and this week, a body was found in St. Louis, which belongs to a man who fell victim to murder after possibly meeting someone through the site.
It has yet to be confirmed that a Craigslist ad is directly related, but based on what the victim's family has said, it appears this was likely the case.
The body of Robert Lovings Polk, a 22-year-old Army veteran, was reportedly found in St. Louis on Thursday in an alley. He had been shot and had been missing after going to look at a used car, his family believes. St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports:
The body of Robert Lovings Polk was decomposed, but tests later showed he had been shot, police said.
Polk, 22, was found dead about 7:40 a.m. Thursday in an alley in the 8000 block of Frederick Street, in the Baden neighborhood. He has been missing since Oct. 3, when his mother said he left home, possibly to meet someone to buy a car posted on the online marketplace Craigslist. Police have not yet confirmed that theory.
Though the Craigslist angle has yet to be proven, the story is all too familiar.
A year ago, Law Street reported that it had identified 58 murderers and 45 murder victims connected to Craigslist postings through the previous June.
Even since then, in April, Advanced Interactive Media Group said that since 2007 there had been 86 killings that were in some way linked to Craigslist.
Suffice it to say, Craigslist has a reputation. Here's a peek at some recent casual conversation from Twitter:
CraigsList could solve all its problems by adding a section called Casual Encounters NOT Ending in Murder
— MARILYN MEJIA (@1MARILYN69MEJIA) October 16, 2015
Went to Phoenix to buy a couch I found on Craigslist and I think he was trying to rape/rob/murder me. Needless to say I still need a couch.
— Kramer (@Giganteoo) October 14, 2015
Buying something off craigslist is like planning your own grisly murder.
— jaysauce! (@srcdecay) October 14, 2015
@AtlasSmugged If you're looking to get murdered, you should probably move on to Craigslist. They're good for murder/used sofas.
— A Curious Sea Lion (@CuriousSeaLion) October 13, 2015
"Alright class for today's essay you are going to tell me how to murder someone through a Craigslist ad" - My freshman comp professor, 2K15
— Dylan Barton (@Am1sh_gg) October 13, 2015
Sam facetimed a Craigslist stranger 2 make sure we're actually buying a pup & not setting up our own murder. Its ? pic.twitter.com/KSGTQqCpJV
— Savannah Walker (@savannahcwalker) October 13, 2015
i am giving away this shampoo i don't use on Craigslist and someone is coming to pick it up. i hope they don't try to murder me lol
— MJ (@beneathurfeet) October 10, 2015