CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Cape Girardeau police are investigating a report of robbery at gunpoint.
Cape Girardeau Police Sgt. Joey Hann said they got the call at 2 p.m. on Monday for a robbery near the Church of Christ at the intersection of West End Blvd. and Bloomfield Road.
"It was an online sales site," Hann said. "The buyer agreed to sell the cell phone to a buyer. The buyer then took the cell phone by force and brandished a weapon while he fled the scene."
Hann said the victim called police and gave them a description of what the suspect looked like.
“She said it was one suspect. He’s a black male in his late teens,” Hann said. “She said he had a tattoo on his neck that said ‘G money’ and had a 100 dollar bill.”
We talked with Jen Russell of Jackson who said she was the one that met the man for the exchange. She said she made arrangements to meet the person at the Church of Christ and that this was the second time they met up for the exchange.
"The first time that I met him, I was with my daughter and my boyfriend," Russell explained. "He came and said, 'I forgot my sim card. Do you care if we meet tomorrow when I get sim card so I can make sure my phone works?' He didn't want to pay $850 for a phone he didn't use."
The next day, Russell met the man alone. That's when she said the man robbed her with a gun.
"I said, 'So, do you have the money?' He said, 'Yeah, it's in my sock.'" Russell described. "He went to bend down to get the money out of his sock. That's when I looked over and had my phone over here and was looking at it. That's when I felt the phone yanked out of my hand and he pointed a gun in my face and told me not to drive anywhere for 10 minutes and he ran around the corner."
Russell said it was a scary situation but wanted others that meet up for online sales to know what happened.
“I’m on all kinds of sell it groups, SEMO Moms and all kinds of groups,” Russell continued. “I didn’t think twice about meeting someone in broad daylight in a church parking lot and thinking that would happen. Especially moms who don’t have someone to watch their kids when they go do these drops, that could have easily been my daughter with me at the time if I hadn’t had to go to work.”
Hann suggests to research the seller or buyer as much as possible beforehand and meet up at a more secure location like a police station.
"Any time you're going to do something like this, don't go to that location alone. Make sure your family and friends know when you're going to be there, when you're going to arrive and going to leave," Hann said. "We also suggest to use a highly public place during daylight hours. We offer our police department as a safe selling and buying site for anyone who is interested. They can always travel onto the property at the police station and use the public lobby for any type of transaction like that."
Hann said if you have any information on this incident or suspect, to call the Cape Girardeau Police Department at 573-335-6621.