What started as a Craigslist hoax ended with a Jacksonville,
Oregon man losing
almost all of his worldly possessions.
The ad appeared Saturday afternoon, stating that Robert Salisbury
found himself suddenly forced to leave the area due to undisclosed
circumstances, and that all his belongings were free for the taking.
Salisbury, an independent contractor, was unaware of the ad until
he received the call from a concerned citizen. While driving home,
Salisbury says he noticed several cars filled with his belongings,
including a truck filled with his contracting equipment, which
included work ladders, a lawn mower, and a weed eater. “I informed
them I was the owner, but they refused to give the stuff back,”
said Salisbury. “They showed me the Craigslist printout and
told me they had the right to do what they did.”
After arriving at home, Salisbury found approximately 30 people
rummaging through his home, including his front porch and his barn.
Salisbury says the trespassers, who showed him a copy of the ad
and ignored his requests to stop, brushed him off. “They honestly
thought that because it appeared on the Internet it was true,"
he said. “It boggles the mind.”
Michelle Easley, the woman that originally warned Salisbury of the
ad, says she came to his house to claim his horse, which the ad
described as abandoned by the sheriff’s department and free for the
taking. “I can't stand to see a horse suffer so I drove out there
and got her,” said Easley, “[but] the horse didn't look abandoned.
She is in good shape for being 32 years old.”
Easley said the situation seemed odd, so she left a note on
Salisbury’s door. However, after noticing a second ad appear on
Craigslist, she said she decided to call him to confirm the ad’s
legitimacy – and that’s when she learned it was a hoax.
“I feel bad because I was a part of it,” said Easley. “It
felt right to call the police.”
The hoax has once again called into question Craigslist’s policy
of anonymity towards its posters, which many feel is overly
permissive. Craigscrimelist, which monitors the classified service
for crime and fraud, said
that hoaxes such as the one Salisbury fell victim to are likely
to continue “as long as craigslist keeps their (sic) anonymity
policy the way it is.”
Salisbury says he’s given a handful of license plate numbers to
the police, and that he will accept items returned to him without any
questions. Meanwhile, detectives are working with Craigslist’s
legal team to determine who exactly was behind the prank.
quote: by Ryanman on March 26, 2008 at 2:43 PMthis whole article is a prime example of why everyone should have a gun. Kthx.
quote: p.p.s. For clarification, there is a law that owners of gas stations cannot permit untrained people to pump gas, which basically requires them to employ attendants.
quote: If they still refused, well it wouldn't be me calling the police on them....
quote: However, how did these people get in? Did he not lock his doors? Did they just break in and take the stuff?
quote: I do wonder if this story would have had a different ending were it occurring in Texas though.
quote: These laws are good laws btw.
quote: You have for some reason come to the conclusion that a drug dealer without a handgun is not illegal.
quote: If everyone is armed people think twice about crime.
quote: A lot of the courage comes from thinking that you have something over the person you are attacking, robbing, vandalizing...
quote: If everyone is armed people think twice about crime.
quote: That's impossible to know, but I do know that crime still carries on. I'm guessing that it absolutely is no deterent whatsoever.
quote: At that point in time taking the stuff was a criminal act.
quote: and I saw all these seemingly normal citizens taking things, I would then possibly assume it was true and authorized, possibly then taking something myself.
quote: I dunno about you, but one of the last places I'd be looking for stuff to loot is in someone's underwear drawer.
quote: Quite honestly he should sue Craigslist for all he lost, it's in part there fault for allowing this and covering for the guy that posted this thing.
quote: don't agree at all. I liken it to getting upset at Canon for being the printer and paper that made the ad that got sent around to homes.
quote: So I take it then that you're totally against gun control then, right?
quote: 1) Where in the constitution is a "right to vote?" (hard question)2) Where in the constitution is a "right to bear arms?" (easier)3) Do you live in a "democracy" or a "republic?" (give away)
quote: Yes and while you're totally against guns, criminals aren't. So while you'll be able to do nothing but call the police if an armed person breaks into your home, those of us who are smart will shoot them.
quote: Having guns made illegal would make it harder for criminals to get guns.
quote: Total anonymity is synonymous with absolute power.
quote: Total anonymity is synonymous with absolute power
quote: Total anonymity is synonymous with absolute power.I'll let that hang in mid-air for a bit so that you can watch as it's logical corollaries crystalize in your melon.
quote: I'll let that hang in mid-air for a bit so that you can watch as it's logical corollaries crystalize in your melon.
quote: as long as craigslist keeps their (sic) anonymity policy the way it is
quote: ...as long as craigslist keeps "its" anonymity...
quote: Craiglist keep their anonymity...
quote: Craiglist keeps its anonymity...
quote: he must have done something shady to make somebody want to do this to him.
quote: Don't you people have any kind of grasp on presumption of innocence or the possibility that the craigslist poster was a vengeful idiot?
quote: Some of you are saying, that it's all right to murder, or attempt to murder, someone for stealing.
quote: basically, if you take out a gun and shoot someone just for stealing stuff from your yard (which is what looks like happened here), sounds to me like you could get sent up for murder.
quote: What started as a Craigslist hoax ended with a Jacksonfield, Oregon man losing almost all of his worldly possessions.