Crime

Prosecutors: Man sets up robbery via social media, police identify him from Facebook photos

Police arrested a teenager accused of robbing a University Place man of his cellphone, after officers identified the suspect on Facebook.

According to charging papers:

The owner of the phone posted it for sale on a Facebook-related website.

An 18-year-old man exchanged messages with him, they agreed on a price, and the two met somewhere along South Orchard Street in University Place Sept. 23.

The owner gave the phone to the teenager to look at, at which point the would-be buyer shoved him, then got into his car and took off without paying.

Another person was driving, and there was a young child in the vehicle.

The seller tried to hang onto the window of the car as it drove off, but let go as the window rolled up.

He identified the suspect for officers in Facebook photos, and police arrested the 18-year-old, who has a prior robbery conviction for a similar incident involving an iPod for sale on Craigslist, prosecutors said.

The teenager pleaded not guilty Friday to second-degree robbery in connection to the stolen phone, and his bail was set at $50,000.

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