Safe Zones to be Created for Craigslist, Kijiji Users, Calgary Police Say

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Safe Zones to be Created for Craigslist, Kijiji Users, Calgary Police Say

Buying and selling on online classified sites like Craigslist can be nerve wracking.

Not knowing the other party involved in the transaction can be merely uncomfortable, but it can also be downright dangerous, even in a city as safe as Calgary.

From the sale of stolen items to fraud and even violent crimes, online classifieds like Craigslist and Kijiji are used by some would-be criminals to prey on unsuspecting Calgarians hoping to find a bargain. This creates a problem for the innocent victims of these crimes and for the Calgary Police, who must investigate these crimes but have trouble preventing them.

In the U.S., many municipal law enforcement agencies have established "safe zones" for those buying and selling through online classified sites. Cst. Carter Duchesney of Calgary’s Crime Prevention Unit wants to make safe zones like these available to Calgary residents.

Individuals will be allowed to bring their merchandise to local police departments designated as safe zones, and conduct their business in full of view of security cameras and in close proximity to law enforcement officials. This strategy has proven effective in reducing the rates of crime committed during transactions that begin on online classified sites, and there is no reason to believe such an approach would not be effective in Calgary.

There is no word yet on when the Calgary Police will begin offering safe zones for online purchases, or which neighborhood police stations will be designated as safe zones.