COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho – On Tuesday, a man posted an ad on Facebook in a Coeur d’Alene buying and selling group that said he was selling an 18-year-old girl. That post generated a lot of comments and concern. KREM 2 went on a search to verify whether the post was legitimate.
KREM 2 reached out to several sources to try and verify the post. We contacted the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office and a detective at a police department in California near the Sacramento area. We also tried to contact the person who posted the ad.
It was a post that raised eyebrows the first time people set eyes on it. A man with a hard to pronounce name and a city in the country of Sri Lanka listed as his hometown.
The post reads: “This girl is of no use to me any more. Let’s start the bids at 500 dollars.”
One more line then reads, “She is 18.”
The post was shared in the group, “CDA Shop and Swap.” The public group has more than 14,000 members. The post has since been deleted, but at one point, it had close to 300 comments.
So first, where did the picture of this girl come from?
KREM 2 did a reverse image search across the internet using a website called “TinEye.” The search turned up with no hits, meaning the photo appears to be fairly unique and is not some kind of stock photo.
Is the picture some kind of sick joke?
First, KREM 2 went to the source: the man who shared the post. We responded to the post and sent the man a Facebook message. As of 6:00 p.m., we have not heard back.
Next, we called Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office. One of their detectives said that this would not be a case that would involve them. Even though the page is advertised on a local group, the post indicates that it originated in California and the man who posted it may live overseas.
KREM 2 then turned to the Citrus Heights, California police department. We were one of the first to bring the post to their attention. On Wednesday night, a Citrus Heights PD detective said they are investigating the post.
Like KREM 2, Citrus Heights PD is trying to determine if the post is real or fake. Specifically, they are looking at where this photo may have come from. They are also comparing the post to other social media sites.
If it is fake, the person responsible could potentially face charges. If it is real and a person is really trying to sell a person online, you can bet a variety of serious crimes would be applicable.
In conclusion, for now KREM 2 will have to leave this as a question mark when it comes to whether this post is verifiable. We can say authorities are investigating and are trying to figure out if it is real or fake.
- LINK: Kootenai County Sheriff's Office
- LINK: Citrus Heights Police Department (California)
- Person who posted the Facebook ad
- Disclaimer: We would give you a link to the post, but it has since been deleted. We also decided not to reveal the profile that posted the ad in case the Facebook photo is a stolen image.