Woman Says She Received Threatening Phone Call After Posting on - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Woman Says She Received Threatening Phone Call After Posting on Craigslist

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A Sparks woman, who does not want to be identified, says she received a threatening phone call from an unknown man after posting a baby-sitting ad on Craigslist. 

She posted on the site on Tuesday and shortly thereafter received a call from a blocked number. She says he began the call sounding like a regular father interested in her in-home care-giving services.

However, he then began to ask what she says were odd questions. He inquired about the races, ages and genders of the children she already watches. 

The conversation continued and she mentioned she had kids of her own. She says, "He said 'Oh, you have children!' and there was like excitement in this guy's voice and I said 'Yes, I do.' That's when I was like 'I can't meet you,' because I just had a weird feeling about it."

The man continued on after finding out that his son was about the same age as her nephew, about  a year and a half. That was right before things took a turn for the worst. She continues, "He said 'Well that's great, I can come the same time your nephew gets there,' and he proceeded to tell me he would take my nephew and his son in the back room and do these things to these children."

She says the things he described were so graphic, she did not even want to repeat them.

She immediately hung up, called the police and deleted her ad. She says she then contacted other babysitters who had similar ads on Craigslist. She said a couple of the women she spoke with told her they have also recently received threatening phone calls.

A detective with the Sparks Police Department is currently investigating the case. 

Officer Ken Gallop with SPD says there are several things you can do to protect yourself when dealing with online interactions, especially since he says there is a certain degree of anonymity for people wanting to perpetrate crimes through the internet.

  • Be careful about the information you post online. Do not share detailed personal information on the internet. 
  • Hang up the phone if a suspicious character begins to harass you, make threats or asks otherwise unusual questions. Trust your instinct.
  • If you're meeting up with someone you met online--either to purchase a product or service or even through dating apps--do it in a well-lit public place/neutral location. I.E. a coffee shop during the day, or even a police station. 
  • Always tell a friend who you are meeting up with and when. Or, even better, take a friend with you. There is strength in numbers. 
  • Stay within parameters of communication within the site. I.E. On Craigslist, you can communicate directly through email account information you set up with your account. 
  • Beware. Scammers or other criminals will often try to contact you outside of those parameters so that information is not captured through the host site.

Even if someone makes these types of threats but does not act on them, they could possibly face misdemeanor charges for "annoying and harassing phone calls."

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