Online crime spree comes to an end in Sterling Heights

Police advise online sellers to meet in safe places

Police catch suspected shoe thieves
Police catch suspected shoe thieves

STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. – Police say two men ripped off online sellers. Now police are showing how the two were caught.

Those sales were both arranged on a popular app used to buy and sell used items.

The arrests comes with a warning. The whole incident is a reminder of where and where not to meet up for a sale.

The crime spree came to an end in Sterling Heights and both suspects are facing felony charges.

Police say the first robbery happened outside a McDonald’s at 15 Mile Road and Van Dyke Avenue on Jan. 3.

Someone was selling Adidas Yeezy shoes and Nike Air Jordans posted on Letgo, an app where you can sell and buy used items.

The sellers who are also the victims met who they thought was the buyer, but instead the buyer snatched the shoes and took off in a gold pick up truck which later wouldn’t be hard to spot.

“Yeah I don’t think they thought these crimes through,” said Lt. Mario Bastianelli of the Sterling Heights Police Department.

The suspects did the exact same thing to a different seller the very next day. This time in a Kroger parking lot at 18 Mile Road and Dequindre.

“Same thing. Same subjects. Letgo app. Adidas Yeezy shoes and Air Jordans,” said Bastianelli.

But it wasn’t long before an officer saw that gold pickup truck, flips around and pulls them over.

Inside the truck all the stolen shoes were found.

Now the Sterling Heights Police Department has some advice: If you’re selling anything online meet some place safe, even a police department lobby.

“We welcome it. The main thing is keeping citizens safe," said Bastianelli.

About the Authors:

Nick joined the Local 4 team in February of 2015. Prior to that he spent 6 years in Sacramento covering a long list of big stories including wildfires and earthquakes. Raised in Sterling Heights, he is no stranger to the deep history and pride Detroit has to offer.

Natasha Dado is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit.