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Craigslist kidnapping attempt ends in car chase and shootout at Florida Walmart
Just another day in Pensacola.
Even for a casual reader of the Internet, seeing the words “Craigslist” and “Florida” in the same sentence is enough to produce a shiver of dread. Throw in the phrase “Walmart parking lot” and you’ve got the makings of a botched crime almost too bizarre to believe. And yet …
Two young men, Darius Beasley and Jamichael Tucker, were arrested on Tuesday in Pensacola over a supposed kidnapping attempt that began with the victim posting in Craigslist’s “For Sale” section. He claims he had sought a buyer for a $4,500 wedding ring and seen a reply from Beasley, who met him at his truck, parked outside a Walmart, envelope of cash in hand.
Beasley allegedly entered the vehicle and made the exchange as agreed, but as soon as he did, Tucker appeared at the driver’s side window with a gun, according to the victim. He then opened the door and tried to duct tape the man’s wrists, only to have him escape and start running. The two suspects bolted for their own car and drove off, but the victim got back his truck and gave chase, which apparently prompted Tucker to lean out of his window and start shooting at him.
A deputy eventually pulled the pair over to arrest them. Miraculously, none of the three men nor any bystanders were injured. As lucky as the victim was here, we’d like to take this opportunity to remind you that you don’t chase guys with guns when you’re unarmed, you shouldn’t sell something worth more than $20 on Craigslist (eBay, anyone?), and you never, ever meet an Internet stranger in some random parking lot.
Alternatively, just try to stay married.
Miles Klee is a novelist and web culture reporter. The former editor of the Daily Dot’s Unclick section, Klee’s essays, satire, and fiction have appeared in Lapham’s Quarterly, Vanity Fair, 3:AM, Salon, the Awl, the New York Observer, the Millions, and the Village Voice. He's the author of two odd books of fiction, 'Ivyland' and 'True False.'