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Councilor proposes safe places in Boston police stations for residents to consumate deals arranged online

City Councilor Matt O'Malley (Jamaica Plain, West Roxbury) wants to give Bostonians a safer way to complete transactions arranged on Craigslist and other online sites.

In a proposed ordinance to be discussed at the City Council's regular meeting on Wednesday, O'Malley proposes using spaces in city police stations for "e-commerce exchange zones:"

"E-commerce Exchange Zones would provide residents with a safe, well-lit and neutral location to conduct exchanges of goods or money such as the sale of event tickets or other items," he writes. Because Boston police stations are already open 24 hours a day, these zones could be created at little cost.

The council will likely send the proposal to a committee for a hearing before voting on it.

The council's meeting begins at noon in its fifth-floor chambers in City Hall.

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Comments

good idea

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A good idea that's been in practice for years already.

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I'm not aware of this in Boston but it's not a service I've ever needed.

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Some police departments already do this for private auto/gun/boat/ATV/trailer sales because of the paperwork & amount of money involved. Surprised Boston is late to the game.

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i think in this case they are talking about cell phone, laptop and sneaker sales and other smaller items (example given is tickets to an event). A lot of times kids go online under a fake account, to sell you an item (say a new iphone) because they know that means the victim is bringing $500 in cash. A lot of street robberies, get you that kind of cash.

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IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/GW05GMB.jpg)

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Ok, so I use my local police station for most sketchy transactions. But for me this is just like returning an iPhone i found. The police are always cool about this, but they will be unhappy if it becomes an official thing.

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I do a lot of Craigslist transactions and at times I wonder just what I am dealing with or who. At times the people selling are in parts of town that don't always feel the safest. So the idea of doing these exchanges in a somewhat more secure place is very attractive. I am all for it. It also has the plus side of possibly shining a somewhat brighter light on BPD and the idea of community policing. I am all for it.

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Just what do you think is happening in the public area of stations that warrants light shining?

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When I'm meeting a "masseuse" for a full body rub-down I'd prefer to do it in a shithole Burlington motel where I have at least a 50-50 chance of rubbed and not arrested.

Am I right?

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^

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I totally want my "Massuer " to do me in cell. I pay my taxes .

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Why not use a fire house. The firefighters could make them tea also.

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And of course the police being able to witness (and video/audio record) every single transaction and keep a record of it isn't at all part of an ulterior motive behind this, is it.

After this starts, you'll see people who made large-dollar transactions suddenly find themselves being audited, people selling possibly sketchy stuff like event tickets or products that are often counterfeited like high-end handbags suddenly being investigated for criminal activity, and so on.

This makes me think of those ruses police occasionally run where they tell wanted criminals to come down to the PD and pick up a "free TV" (or whatever) that they won in a sweepstakes. Now let's see who's dumb enough to fall for this one.

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If this cuts down on illegal transactions I'm sure the police are all in favor of it. Most private sales of used goods aren't taxable anyway. Otherwise the police have better things to do then monitor the exchange areas for tax freud.

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Sorry. Had to be done.

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Instead of meeting at a police or fire station, why not meet in a busy, well-lit coffee shop or restaurant during daylight hours?? Some place that has a fuckton of witnesses and a high probability of security cameras on or near the property?

That's how I have *always* handled meeting strangers for the first time, whether it was a blind date or meeting to purchase (or sell) an item up for sale in a newspaper ad or e-Bay or Craigslist.

I have met many a stranger safely in that fashion...sketchy people or those with nefarious plans do not want lots of witnesses who can describe them, their faces caught on camera, or even possibly a security guard or cop in the area. The only time anyone ever refused to meet me in such a very, very, very public and brightly-lit manner was a blind date set up for me by a coworker who turned out not to know very well the guy she was trying to set me up with . Dude kept pushing to pick me up at my home, and I kept refusing to give my home address to a stranger. Found out later he was arressted for a string of burglaries...all the homes of women that he had "dated" at one time or another. (Coworker was appropriately horrified and apologetic. She stopped playing Cupid for a looong time after that.)

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I'd be up for meeting in a Starbucks too but the police station is going to be quicker to respond if things go south. It's also a good way of weeding out the type of people who don't want to be near police stations.

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