Dating for cops
Users could look for mates in their immediate area — around the corner at a Starbucks, for instance. Later, when West was at the Hard Times Cafe in Springfield, Va., shooting pool with two friends, he was spending so much time messaging Smith that one of his friends grabbed the phone and wrote to Smith: “Just come out and meet us.” Smith was just getting off work in the District and decided to go. Companies like Grindr, Hornet, Scruff and Jack’d were designed for men looking to meet men. He worked for a federal law enforcement agency in the District, lived in Annapolis and had just come out of a relationship. He did, giving himself the screen name “Copster” and posting a casual photo of himself at a restaurant with a female friend. A message popped up — “Howdy” — from a guy who’d taken an informal selfie and went by a name that evoked his previous career in the Air Force: “Flyboyndel.” Seemed harmless enough to Smith, who responded over a platform similar to a text message. After arriving, he took a seat at the downstairs bar and ordered a Miller Lite. Ken Penrod, a longtime Montgomery County detective who has worked the robbery, homicide and vice beats.In Fairfax County, Detective Darrin De Coster said that even when victims speak with police, they can be vague about the details of crimes.And the safety of Craigslist users depends on how they use the site. He spoke on the condition of anonymity to guard the same anonymity he maintains in online posts.
“All criminals have a niche, and online predators in this field prey on vulnerabilities — be that closeted men, married men or others seeking sex this way,” said Sgt.“People are looking for a higher level of transparency,” said Britanny Carter, an analyst at the market research firm IBISWorld.Still, Craigslist and similar bulletin-board sites remain a popular venue for people who seek relationships in secret and for men seeking sex with other men.But that’s not the same as police officers, who sometimes have to make split-second decisions that can result in taking someone’s life.However, although some media outlets like CNN might have you think differently, cops are people just like everyone else, only with more responsibility.