Same Old Tricks in a New Digital World.

Two teens were arrested and police are looking for a third suspect after authorities say they used a dating app to rob their victim in a home invasion in Allapattah, Fla.
Roger Euceda, 18, and a 17-year-old suspect were arrested on charges of home invasion robbery, use of a firearm during the commission of a felony and resisting arrest without violence, Miami Police said Tuesday.
According to police, the victim set up a first-time meeting with a man through a smart phone dating app. When the man showed up Monday night, the victim let him into his home on Northwest 21st Avenue.

via Teens Used Dating App to Commit Home Invasion Robbery: Miami Police | NBC 6 South Florida.

Just because we live in a digital age and we can do many wonderful and amazing things with our smartphones, does not mean we take leave of our common sense.

But what would make anybody allow a total stranger into their place of residence? I am sure the victim is not as naive as to say yes to the first person that comes along on the street, so what happened in this case? It is simple: everything looked OK.

Bear with me for a bit.

We are visual input animals. If it looks good/pretty/professional/etc, it gets our approval specially if it conforms to what we have seen before. This is known by the counterfeiter that prints $20 bills to the street hustler that comes to you with a lotto ticket with the winning numbers and a sad story about not being able to collect because “X” but he is willing to share with you the windfall if you help him.

But it gets worse when a real item is used to commit the crime. It could be a police/utilities/military/common carrier uniform and you open the door without much thought to what turns out to be not a member of the profession. We just saw a gun control group opening a faux Gun Store in NYC and people went in because it looked real (to the average New Yorker anyway.)

Probably in this case we have a dose of the above with the added spice of the victim wanting it to be true. He might have used the app before with good results, so he threw caution to the wind and managed to snag the one guy who was using the same app for criminal deeds. Digital Era Tools used for Old School Crimes.

We all have the capacity for self-deception. Nobody is immune. The best we can do is to discipline ourselves and keep loses to a minimum by being extremely cautious, specially if we are talking about contacting another human for the first time. It is a game of percentages, there are no 100% guarantee or your money back.

Or you can be a hermit living in a remote cave, and hope Amazon Drones deliver to your location.

6 Replies to “Same Old Tricks in a New Digital World.”

  1. Never ever meet anyone from the net in a private place. I’ve met a few people and it’s always in a public place. I met one back in 98 in a parts store parking lot. A few years later I married her.




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    1. I met one back in 98 in a parts store parking lot. A few years later I married her.

      Let this be a lesson to all of you about the dangers of meeting strangers online 😀 😀 😀

      I am so sorry… it was just hanging there so low…




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  2. Anybody I’m going to meet based on an on-line contact or a newspaper ad will be done in a public place with at least one friend providing overwatch. Not because I distrust the person I am meeting but because so many others have created the world where we need to be cautious. How is it so many people either have not learned this or intentionally choose to ignore it?

    When I call a plumber I get one from a company that has a brick-and-mortar office and tinsist the office staff needs to call me to let me know the guy they dispatched is at my house -even when I see the truck parked in the driveway. If they don’t call me, I’ll call them.

    Some (way too few) companies send a picture of the guy they are sending – and it’s not becaue they don’t trust their guy.

    stay safe.




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  3. It’s getting to where we hear almost daily about some scam or other on Craig’s list. We have two or three a week here in little Des Moines. I’ve never dealt with anyone on there and don’t intend to.

    We have a trade Des Moines facebook page that SW peruses now and then. I met a guy one day and got her a shirt she wanted. We met in a stop and rob parking lot. Nice guy, but I was armed and on alert. The S&R wasn’t in the nicest neighborhood.




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