Baiting men

The local crime blotter has reported several instances of people agreeing to meet via a dating app, only to result in an individual arriving at the predetermined address where he (I assume he) is assaulted and robbed by multiple men who corner the victim after he’s entered the apartment building.

I hadn’t heard of this particular scam before I first read about it a few weeks ago although perhaps it is widespread. You wouldn’t even need an actual woman to pull off this nasty piece of business; a photo of one would do, just to use on the dating site. If all communication is online, no phone calls prior to meeting, anybody could type messages and agree to meet. It seems like catfishing with a vicious twist.

The police spokesman was quoted in this week’s paper warning the public about these crimes, cautioning that no one is ever obligated to meet at an address the other party has set and can instead insist on their own, such as a public, well-lit spot. The police station itself was mentioned as a good meeting location. (After a rash of crimes involving people who supposedly agreed to meet to sell items, the police previously put the word out that the station lobby was open 24 hours a day and was available for meetings of any stripe between strangers. Which is a great public service.)

Here’s the thing. If a man believes he’s meeting a woman, a woman who has probably already mentioned sex in text communications, he’s going to be happy to be go to her home address, right? Sex! Why else would a strange woman provide her home address? That’s what this guy is thinking. He’s not going to risk scaring her off by saying he wants to meet her in a safe, public location first. He wants her address.

I remember reading once, probably in Esquire that a man was biologically programmed to desire sex so much that he’d risk his life for it. I wondered about that over the years; a man who thinks sex is in his near future is a man willing to take a lot of risk, although I’m not so sure how many will risk their actual lives. I also imagine a man probably thinks he can handle anything that goes awry, if he thinks about it at all. I don’t believe men using meeting apps are going to become more cautious when a woman gives out her “address” with its suggestion of imminent sex. The criminals are tapping into men’s deepest desire and know that many men will take their bait. What an ugly crime.

15 thoughts on “Baiting men

  1. AutumnAshbough

    Men have such a sense of safety. One woman on Twitter was marveling at how easily male users on social media give out their whereabouts and are all, “come join me!” Whereas women are very cautious with their information and would never agree to meet somewhere private for the first time. Or even the second.

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    1. Colette Post author

      I almost said something about how women can’t afford to throw caution to the wind but didn’t. (Although sex workers/prostitutes take those risks habitually.) I don’t know why men feel so safe, even if they carry a weapon they can be taken by surprise and by multiple attackers. I remember an old Criminology course where they said men are more likely to be murdered (just generally) than women; maybe they don’t know that.

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        1. Colette Post author

          I feel a bit sorry for these men maybe because the crime exceeds their foolishness/naivete/whatever. Personally, I’m all kinds of cautious and careful; there’s nothing I want that badly.😐

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    1. Colette Post author

      That doesn’t make you sound like a conspiracy theorist, just a realist! I go you one more and say that people think all sorts of things online “must be safe”.

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  2. Kate Crimmins

    That whole thing is scary to me. It would take a lot for me to meet someone I met on the internet even in a public place. They can seem really nice and you walk out to the car together and bam! I’d need a bodyguard for the first dozen dates!

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    1. Colette Post author

      I’ve met strangers but I wouldn’t DREAM of going to someone’s home to meet or inviting them to mine. I like your bodyguard idea very much Kate! Relying on my wits and perception gets tiresome.

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  3. Ally Bean

    That’s a new one that I suspect is an old one re-purposed for today’s generation. What a scary scenario, but one that I’m sure happens. It’s wonderful that your local police are offering the lobby as a meeting place. That makes sense if you have to meet a stranger.

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    1. Colette Post author

      It really is decent that the police regularly advertise the lobby for use – they are the ones who know how many people are getting scammed from online meetups. The way you said it’s “repurposed” is very apropos. The particular version is so brazen but I guess by the time the victim or neighbors call police the attackers are gone.

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      1. Ally Bean

        I remember seeing an old B&W movie [can’t remember the name] in which a woman would lure a man to meet her at her apartment, where the bad guys would rob the man before he entered the apartment, that the woman was only pretending to live in. Your scenario sounded like an updated version of that movie plot.

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