CLAYTON, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- A victim shopping to replace his stolen iPhone found it on Craigslist.
The victim told police his $549 iPhone and the $30 case had been stolen June 30 from his lawn chair while he was on the beach at George Winter Park in Fenton.
Police say Codey Bergmann, 20, knew the victim from high school and was also on the beach when the phone went missing.
While the victim was shopping for a new phone on the Internet, he found one that looked just like his stolen one with a similar case.
Police say a third party had listed the stolen phone on Craigslist.
Bergmann was charged October 10 with felony stealing. His bail was set at $20,000.
While this case might be closed, St. Louis County officers have several suggestions to help future victims stay safe.
They suggest writing down serial numbers of all electronics. That way, if something is stolen, the victim can ask the Craigslist seller for the number. If it matches, police recommend never meeting the seller in person. Instead, get the seller’s contact information and contact police.
“Working with police, they will set up some type of option to a find the person and find the phone and deal with it in a safe manner,” Detective Mark Berry said.
According to St. Louis police, many robberies are motivated by drugs. They said thieves need quick money to pay for heroin, methamphetamines and/or bath salts, so stealing and then selling a stolen item on an anonymous website like Craigslist is quick and efficient.