A fake profile on a popular dating website was the bait for a pair of recent robberies in Middle Tennessee, police said.
Cavayah Hancock, 19, of Columbia, is accused of creating a fake profile on the free dating website Plenty of Fish in order to rob people.
"He would go online and pose as a female and lure male victims to come to Columbia," said Lt. Joey Gideon, a detective with the Columbia Police Department.
Police said Hancock stole the photo of someone he knew, a young blond woman, and told potential suitors to bring cash in exchange for sex.
In separate instances last week, two men fell for the scheme. One drove from Williamson County, while the other came from Lawrence County to a Columbia neighborhood.
In each instance, the robbery happened late at night. Police said Hancock met the victims on a neighborhood street near a dead end, just a few feet from where he lives.
"He would wrap his hand in cloth, indicating he had a handgun, and would demand cash," Gideon said.
Hancock reportedly lives with his grandmother and was supposed to join the Marines Monday. Police arrested him Sunday.
No one answered the door at the home when Channel 4 News visited Tuesday.
Even with electronic evidence, police said this was not an easy case to solve. Plenty of Fish is operated out of Canada, so it took more time to get information from the company.
Police offered a warning for other online daters.
"If you're going to meet someone, meet them in a public place," Gideon said.
Police said the victims in this case could face prostitution charges, but no charges have been filed at this time.
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