Police Friday warned residents of the dangers of selling anything to strangers after a Huntington Beach man was assaulted with pepper spray by a robber he thought he was meeting for a legitimate sale of an iPhone in Costa Mesa.
The victim arranged to sell the device he had listed for sale on Craigslist to Steven Anthony Patino, 20, of Anaheim, who was later arrested and booked on suspicion of robbery, according to Costa Mesa police Lt. Paul Beckman.
The two met at 6:15 p.m. Wednesday in the 3200 block of Harbor Boulevard, Beckman said. The suspect attacked the 45-year-old victim with pepper spray, grabbed the phone and fled, Beckman said.
A witness got a photo of the suspect and the get-away vehicle he used, Beckman alleged.
That led police today to Patino, who was arrested in Anaheim, Beckman said.
Beckman reminded residents to be careful where they choose to make transactions with strangers.
“When conducting business with strangers, the police department recommends utilizing populated public areas that have obvious surveillance cameras to help protect against victimization,” Beckman said.
–City News Service
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