MOUNT LAUREL, N.J., (CBS) — Those using dating Apps aren’t always after a relationship, sometimes it’s just a romance but one local man wasn’t after either, according to Mt. Laurel police.
“It was a bold thing to do. It speaks to their mindset in doing whatever it takes in getting what they want,” said Lieutenant Stephen Riedener.
Investigators in his department say that on February 10th, just after midnight a man sent another man a photo through an App called – Jack’d. The forum caters the gay community and the two decided to meet at a location on Route 73.
“The suspect directed the victim to drive to what he described as his friend’s house on the 500 block of Lenola Road,” said Riedener.
But that secluded home was not his friend’s and when the pair neared the door the suspect asked the use the victim’s iPhone 6 Plus and then ran off with it back toward Route 73.
That man’s night of “romance” wasn’t over. Just two hours later police were called again for the same said crime and a new victim.
“He directed him to the same cold-e-sac in the same secluded area behind the shopping center,” said the Lieutenant.
Too secluded for the victim. It proved to be a red flag and when this second victim refused to give up his phone the suspect again ran off toward 73.
Survellance pictures from a nearby business matched the attire the suspect was wearing in the photo he had sent earlier in the night.
“What knows what people are thinking or what their families and friends may know about their private lives,” added Riedener.
That said, police fear there could be more victims. For authorities online and app-based dating has become a reality of the times but they do warn that if signals make a person feel that something is not right they should do whatever possible to remove themselves from the situation they are in.
The suspect was described as having a slim frame, around 5’9” and in his early 20s. The victims were identified only as being 19 and 25 years old.
Anyone with any information should contact police.