Text Messaging Lured My Daugther to Danger! CAUTION TO EVERYONE

By
Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX EXECUTIVE REALTY

 

 

Today,everyone has a mobile phone.  If you are like most, you LOVE TO TEXT!  I will admit that I had not really enjoyed texting until this past year but found out convenient it is!

My teenager daughter texts all the time, to my frustration!   Recently her phone stopped working and we had to get her a new phone. Unfortunately...the phone that we got her, an IPhone did not transfer the contacts saved on her SIM card.  She took the phone to school and at lunch ask all of her friends to re-enter their information into her phone.  (NOTE:  She is a senior and he has gone to the same school for 13 years with the pretty much the same kids since kindergarten).   So one by one they entered their information.  Horray...now she was back up and running without much interruption.

A couple of days later, she was...as usual texting all morning...even caught her texting during church (I knew I should have taken that darn phone)!  After church she continued texting all afternoon.  Early evening she planned on going to the Rodeo with friends....they had made plans via text.  One friend said that he was at a friends house and really wanted to go but had no ride. He offered to give her gas money if she would pick him up. 

This also happens all the time within this friend group.  She agreed, even though she knew that he lived about 25 minutes away in a neighborhood that alot of her classmates live.  He told her his friends address and we mapquested it.  She told me she was headed to pick him up and I questioned why she had agreed to go so far.  Unfortunately, he did not tell her he was a bit further away and infact the address was over 35 minutes from our house. 

With Directions in hand, she headed out telling us she would pick him up and head to the rodeo and be home around 11p.m.  About an hour and half passed and she appeared at home hysterically crying....

WHATE HAPPENED NEXT TERRIFIED ME!!!!  She went to the address he had supplied, when she pulled into the neighborhood, she realized it was a neighborhood under construction and several homes were vacant, including the one that she pulled up to.  She stated it looked finished but she knew it was vacant because there were no window treatments (Must be the daughter of a realtor) and she could see there was no furniture in the home. 

 

Once in the driveway she received a text from her friend and he said, "I gave you the wrong house, I am down the street at the last house on the right".  She followed his directions and went to the house as directed.  When she pulled into the driveway, she received a text "I'm out back...come back here". 

 

Well, this is where my daughter had a Bit of Stupid.....she got out of the car and headed to the back of this vacant, secluded home....BUT!!!!  She got irritated and decided she was not going back there afterall and got back in her car and texted him...."I'm here....quit playing around and get out here or I am leaving you!"  He again requested she come to the back of the secluded house.  She refused and told him again she would leave if he did not come out.

Irritated she left and headed home!

She was so mad when she left that she texted her friends to tell what he had done.  To her surprise, he was with them....YES!   He said that he had been with them all day and that HE HAD NOT BEEN TEXTING HER.  They argued and finally they realized.....he had put in the wrong number in her phone.  When he typed it in he was off by one digit. 

SHE HAD BEEN TALKING TO A STRANGER ALL DAY!  THE STRANGER HAD ASK HER VERY VAGUE QUESTIONS AND WHEN WE WENT BACK TO HER TEXT HISTORY...HE HAD FOUND OUT QUITE A BIT ABOUT HER INCLUDING HER ADDRESS....HE WAS SMOOTHE...HE HAD GOTTEN HER ALMOST TO THE BACK OF THE VACANT HOME! 

We called the Police and they gave me this valuable advise:

NEVER AGREE TO MEET ANYONE VIA A TEXT MESSAGE UNTIL YOU CONFIRM THAT THE PERSON YOU ARE TEXTING IS ACTUALLY THE PERSON YOU PLAN TO MEET.  ANYONE CAN GET AHOLD OF SOMEONE ELSES PHONE...FOR EXAMPLE...SOMEONE GETS MY HUSBANDS PHONE AND TEXTS ME....I THINK I AM TALKING TO HIM WHEN INFACT IT IS NOT HIM. 

Folks, this is dangerous stuff..  The person who lured my daughter did not know her, was obviously watching her as he knew exactly when she pulled up at each home.  I shutter to think what may have happened.  I am so thankful that she told me later, she had a bad feeling about going to the back of the house and that is why she got back in her car.

OUR NEW RULE:  VOICE CONFIRMATION THAT YOU ARE TALKING TO WHO YOU ARE TEXTING!

Be safe and remember, texting has dangers especially in our business.

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Re-Blogged 11 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Bernadine Hunter, SFR, ACRE 11/27/2010 04:04 AM
  2. Diane Williams 11/27/2010 08:04 AM
  3. Lizette Fitzpatrick 11/27/2010 09:00 AM
  4. Geri Sonkin 11/27/2010 10:08 AM
  5. Jeff Lundquist 11/27/2010 10:26 AM
  6. Gloria Valvasori 11/27/2010 10:58 AM
  7. Jackie Connelly-Fornuff 11/27/2010 11:24 AM
  8. Larry O'Sullivan 11/27/2010 11:44 AM
  9. Pat Haddad 11/27/2010 11:18 PM
  10. Kate Bourland 11/27/2010 11:23 PM
  11. Larry Story 11/27/2010 11:51 PM
Topic:
Real Estate Technology & Tools
Groups:
Almost Anything Goes
Diary of a Realtor
Posts to Localism
Realtors®
"Whacked"!!!
Tags:
texting safety
the sarah moore team

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Rainer
38,748
Jessica Leimback
Solutions Real Estate - Gilbert, AZ
(ABR,SFR,CNE,SRES,CSSPE) Solutions RE

I cannot believe the lengths bad people will go to hurt other humans. I have this idea that we are all in this life together and it is so short compared to what has happened so far in the history of mankind. Why do we still continue to destroy each other? It just boggles my mind. I am still going to stay happy and positive in my little corner of the world.

Nov 27, 2010 10:06 AM #28
Rainer
157,250
Rhonda Abbott
Howard Hanna - Wadsworth, OH
Wadsworth & Greater Akron, OH

One incorrect number put her in contact with someone like that.  What are the odds???  It really is terrifying.  So glad she paid attention to her instincts and got out of there!

Nov 27, 2010 10:20 AM #29
Rainmaker
1,320,209
Richie Alan Naggar Author PEARLS SERIES of books
People first then business! Ran Right Realty Riverside, Ca - Riverside, CA
on LIFE and LOVE plus Real Estate too!

I got a text the other day stating that I should tell grandma that I love her very much.....the number didn't make sense, but I was open to explore. I inquired and said....I will, but who should I say loves her..? Response...is this my grandmas phone....? Who is your grandma...I wont tell you but is Grandma Clara there...I said no and they said thanks and moved on....Innocent or fishing...?

Nov 27, 2010 10:29 AM #30
Rainmaker
570,046
Bill Gillhespy
16 Sunview Blvd - Fort Myers Beach, FL
Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos

Hi Sarah,  Yikes,  she had a close one this time.  Sounds like she trusted her instincts - glad it all worked out !

Nov 27, 2010 10:34 AM #31
Rainmaker
125,784
Sarah Moore
RE/MAX EXECUTIVE REALTY - Charlotte, NC

Innocent or not!  Text Messaging has a built in danger factor.  Please take the time if you find this post important to repost!

Nov 27, 2010 10:44 AM #32
Rainmaker
183,173
Christa Ross
RE/MAX Select Realty - REALTOR and Green Homes Specialist - Pittsburgh, PA
Helping you buy and sell Pittsburgh's Best Homes

It's good that your daughter realized that something was wrong and left, it's scary to think what could have happened to her. My kids aren't old enough to have their own phones yet but you can be sure that I will tell them about these things when the time comes.

Nov 27, 2010 11:01 AM #33
Rainer
41,620
James McGary
Agents Set Free, Inc - Irvine, CA

Let the texter beware.

Nov 27, 2010 11:37 AM #34
Ambassador
1,279,642
Erica Ramus
Erica Ramus - Ramus Realty Group - Pottsville, PA - Pottsville, PA
MRE, Schuylkill County PA Real Estate

Your daughter is smart and has good instincts. Be thankful for that.

Nov 27, 2010 11:45 AM #35
Rainmaker
386,866
Larry O'Sullivan
Rocky Mountain Realty, Sandy, UT - Sandy, UT
We get homes sold

A timely warning of a real danger. I have reblogged.

Nov 27, 2010 11:50 AM #36
Ambassador
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Karen Fiddler, Broker/Realtor
HOM Sotheby's Intl Realty, 949-510-2395 - Laguna Beach, CA
Laguna Beach & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395

That's scary....I woke to a funny text the other morning, someone looking for a "rick" and I did text back to say they had the wrong number. Then this young man tried to keep texting me and sent me a picture and later in the day texted again to say "hi" and we could be friends....I told him I was a middle aged woman and didn't need anymore friends, but I can see where a young girl might think differently. Scary

Nov 27, 2010 12:10 PM #37
Rainer
103,723
Valerie Baker
Exit Real Estate Professionals - Spokane, WA
Spokane Realtor

Sarah - Thanks for sharing this aspect of "cell phone danger" that I hadn't thought of!  Good advice for everyone!

Nov 27, 2010 12:35 PM #38
Rainmaker
813,480
Gail Robinson
William Raveis Real Estate - Southport, CT
CRS, GRI, e-PRO Fairfield County, CT

That could have turned out so badly!  Thank heavens your daughter is safe.  This could not happen with voice communications.  I'm one of the last texting holdouts.  Something like this could easily happen to real estate agents as well, if they rely on text communications alone. 

Nov 27, 2010 12:39 PM #39
Rainmaker
174,408
Bill Swanson
CBSHOME Real Estate - Omaha, NE

Sarah, Thanks so much! I am making my 16 year old daughter read your story!

Nov 27, 2010 03:09 PM #40
Rainmaker
462,340
Jeff&Grace Safrin
F.C.Tucker 1st Team Real Estate - Valparaiso, IN
SpousesSellingHousesTM

I believe in guardian angels - your daughter definitely has one sarah!

sincerely,

grace

Nov 27, 2010 05:33 PM #41
Rainmaker
248,268
Debra Davis
Keller Williams Realty Atlanta Partners - Snellville, GA
Realtor - Atlanta, Decatur, Snellville, Loganville

This is a very scary story. So glad your daughter was ok though. It is amazing what some people will do.

Nov 27, 2010 06:00 PM #42
Rainmaker
1,040,943
Nick T Pappas
Assoc. Broker/Broker ABR, SFR, e-Pro, @Homes Realty Group, Huntsville AL - Huntsville, AL
Madison & Huntsville Alabama Real Estate Resource

Hello Sarah, I'm here after reading Jackie fornuff's re-blog...this is so incredibly scary...so glad your daughter had the instincts she did. 

Nov 27, 2010 11:25 PM #43
Ambassador
506,304
Pat Haddad
Keller Williams Indianapolis Metro NE - Carmel, IN
Carmel IN Real Estate Expert

Sarah--Just can't thank you enough for putting us on alert.  Everyone should be reblogging this and posting it other places like facebook.  You are really doing a public service---maybe you should go to the newspapers and news channels with this story too---maybe we all should!!

Nov 27, 2010 11:30 PM #44
Rainmaker
528,501
Ken 360.609.0226 Vancouver Homes for Sales
Ken's Home Team at Keller Williams - Vancouver, WA

wow, this is amazing!!!! I am so glad your daughter is safe, and that it is all good..

Nov 28, 2010 12:02 AM #45
Rainmaker
330,458
Jon Quist
LONG REALTY - Tucson, AZ
Tucson's BUYERS ONLY Realtor since 1996

She should have known better, but some of these creeps are very sophisticated. Look at all the adults who fall for the various Internet scams. From Nigeria, no less.

 

Nov 28, 2010 12:20 AM #46
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674,848
Lee & Pamela St. Peter
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices YSU Realty: (919) 645-2522 - Raleigh, NC
Making Connections to Success in Real Estate

Sarah, this just gives me the chills.  I consider myself "savvy" but let me tell you would have never thought about this angle.  Thank you for taking the time to share this with us.  And I will add my thankful prayer that your daughter stood on her instinct and did not go. 

Nov 28, 2010 12:13 PM #47
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