"Craigslist Robber" Arrested in Desert Hot Springs
DESERT HOT SPRINGS--A man known as the "craigslist robber" is behind bars accused of terrorizing a Desert Hot Springs neighborhood.
Desert Hot Springs police arrested 21-year-old Darius Griffin for baiting potential victims with the promise of a luxury car, then robbing them of thousands in cash at gunpoint.
"Who knows? What if we're back there one of these days and the same thing happens," said a neighbor who wished to remain anonymous.
According to police, Griffin used the email alias of email@example.com. He found potential buyers on craigslist, said he was selling a bmw and told them to bring cash.
Griffin lured his victims to a parking lot behind an apartment complex in Desert Hot Springs with the promise of cash for goods. Each encounter grew increasingly violent. He pulled a handgun on the second victim but luckily the gun malfunctioned.
Both victims called Desert Hot Springs police and they quickly took action. The next time Griffin went to meet a potential "client" he met police instead.
"This person needed to be captured," said Desert Hot Springs Police Commander Daniel Bressler. "I think he was very dangerous. You bring a loaded gun to a transaction, you're dangerous."
According to craigslist the number one way to avoid scams is to meet in person, but police suggest meeting in well lit places where there are a lot of people, even police station parking lots. If the deal is legit, the seller won't object.
"If you feel like something's wrong then just bail," Commander Bressler said. "Don't wait around once you see something suspicious. Just take off."
Griffin faces several felony charges including 3 counts of attempted armed robbery. He's being held at Banning Jail. His bail is set at more than half a million dollars.
Desert Hot Springs Police are asking any other victims to please contact them immediately.