Springdale police arrested two men they say robbed three people at gunpoint after posting Craigslist personal ads.
Timothy Counts, 24, and Richard Rodriguez, 22, were arrested Wednesday on suspicion of aggravated robbery, theft by receiving, theft of property, promoting prostitution, breaking and entering and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Two of the armed robberies occurred one week away from each other in late November at the same location, Springdale’s FoxFire Apartments.
Police tracked the number used for the Craigslist personal ad exchanges to an apartment at the complex. Detectives searched the apartment and found items belonging to the victims.
Police expect to make more arrests in the case, according to a statement released by the Springdale Police Department.
One victim, who was hospitalized Nov. 28 following the robbery, arranged to meet a girl he encountered on Craigslist at the apartment complex. He pulled into the parking lot at about 3:30 a.m., when three males covering their faces with bandanas appeared and pulled him out of his car, according to the Springdale Police Department.
One of the suspects struck the victim in the face with a silver handgun. The suspects then dragged the victim behind a nearby building and took his cell phone, wallet and keys. They also removed his socks and shoes, police said.
The victim ran barefoot and bloody to the Heritage Inn on Sunset Avenue and called police. He was later transported to Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville, where he was treated for minor injuries and released, said Lt. Derek Hudson with Springdale police.
The victim could not give extensive information to police about the suspects, other than that they were wearing blue and white bandanas.
A week earlier at the same location—just north of Robinson Avenue on West End Street—another man told police he was robbed and gunpoint, losing his iPhone and $1,000 in cash.
The man told police he had driven from his home in Fort Smith to the Foxfire Apartments to meet a friend at 3 a.m. When he approached the West End and Robinson intersection, two black cars were stopped in front of him. A suspect in a black hooded sweatshirt exited one of the cars, approached the man, and pointed a black handgun at him, the victim told police.
Police started monitoring the area more closely and looked for connections between the robberies.