Coles employee’s online deal ends in agony: ‘I can't afford to lose it’

Content warning: This article depicts violence against an elderly woman, which may be disturbing for some. Reader discretion is advised.

In the digital age, the convenience of online marketplaces like Facebook Marketplace has revolutionised how we buy and sell items.

We can list an item for sale from the comfort of our homes and connect with potential buyers within minutes.

However, as with any online interaction, there is a risk; sometimes, transactions can take a devastating turn.


Rebekah Streader, a grandmother and Coles employee, was in dire financial straits.

Faced with the pressing need to maintain a stable living situation for her family, she made the tough decision to sell her prized Holden ClubSport.


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Streader sustained a severe foot injury following a mishap during a car sale. Credit: 7News Australia / YouTube


With hopes of a quick and smooth transaction, she listed her vehicle on Facebook Marketplace.

It wasn't long before a man, who introduced himself as Caleb, showed interest in Streader's car.

They arranged a meeting at her home for him to inspect the vehicle. However, what should have been a straightforward process turned into a harrowing ordeal.


During the meeting, the man requested a test drive, and Streader trusted in the process and handed over the keys.

In a shocking twist, he locked the doors before she could join him, trapping her outside.

‘I was banging on the window asking him to stop because this car is something I bought years ago and I thought, “I don't want to lose it. I can't afford to lose it,”’ Streader pleaded.

In a callous act, he ran over her foot as he sped away, all witnessed by her 15-year-old son.


Streader suffered a shattered foot, requiring two surgeries and leaving her unable to walk, let alone work, for months.

As she began her recovery, Streader turned to the Facebook messages exchanged with the so-called Caleb, only to discover that he had used a fake account, complicating the efforts to track him down.

She described the man as 170 centimetres tall with a medium build and a goatee.

After the incident, Streader called on Facebook to enhance its security measures, stating that ‘it's too easy for people to be scammed and ripped off’.

‘Facebook requires significant changes immediately,’ she added.

You can watch 7News Australia’s coverage below:


Credit: 7News Australia / YouTube


In a similar story, a 76-year-old grandmother from Melbourne experienced a similar ordeal and fell victim to a carjacking crime in broad daylight.

The grandmother was shaken by the ordeal but relieved that her grandchildren were not in the car at the time. You can read more about the story here.
Key Takeaways

  • A Coles worker suffered a serious injury after her foot was run over during a car sale gone wrong, facilitated through Facebook Marketplace.
  • The grandmother will be unable to walk for months due to the injury, causing her to be unable to work.
  • The incident occurred after the supposed buyer, using a fake account, drove away with her car while her foot was underneath the vehicle.
  • The victim called for Facebook to increase security on their platform to prevent scams and urged users to be cautious when selling items online.
Our hearts go out to Streader for her speedy recovery.

Have you had a transaction done on a social media platform? How did your experience go? We’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions in the comments below.
 
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Facebook Marketplace is increasingly becoming a SELLER BEWARE forum.

Criminals are pretending to be buyers to easily steal from unsuspecting sellers.

Have experienced buyers sitting in their car with the engine running wanting to inspect the sale item.

Time for Facebook to impose security features that protect sellers. Payment through PayPal where payment is held pending collection may work. Realise fees may apply, a suggestion only.
 
Facebook Marketplace is increasingly becoming a SELLER BEWARE forum.

Criminals are pretending to be buyers to easily steal from unsuspecting sellers.

Have experienced buyers sitting in their car with the engine running wanting to inspect the sale item.

Time for Facebook to impose security features that protect sellers. Payment through PayPal where payment is held pending collection may work. Realise fees may apply, a suggestion only.
 
I would have sat in passenger side first and when he got then hand him the keys. But better still have someone else already in the car as well before the person gets in. If he drove up in a car take his keys. Something of that big a value need others present, not a teen, and in public place, even outside a police station. Chances are they wont bother. Or sell car direct to a dealer, might not get a much but at least shouldn't get ripped off with no payment and no car.
 
It’s a sad sad world we live in today that you have to be suspicious of everyone
a friend of mine had a similar thing happen to him, he advertised his motor bike on market place and the so called buyer turned up in a car, he requested a test drive and yep never came back, as it turns out the so called buyer arrived in a stolen car which was left at my friends house, my friend contacted the police, they came and did a report ( but was more about the car) they had it towed and told my friend there wasn’t much they could do because he gave the dude the keys and then when he contacted his insurance company they pretty much told him the same thing, and same with this poor lady, the car probably has different plates, has been painted, and has been rebirthed, it sucks big time that the criminals keep getting away with breaking the law
 
I would have sat in passenger side first and when he got then hand him the keys. But better still have someone else already in the car as well before the person gets in. If he drove up in a car take his keys. Something of that big a value need others present, not a teen, and in public place, even outside a police station. Chances are they wont bother. Or sell car direct to a dealer, might not get a much but at least shouldn't get ripped off with no payment and no car.
Report the car stolen if I stole your car from your home you would report it stole immediately to police and insurance company What’s the difference here it’s stolen
 
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Why do people blame FB for them being ripped off by a criminal?
How do they (FB) decide whether someone buying or selling has criminal intent in mind?
It used to be buyer beware, now it's seller too. Sad. I've been lucky buying and selling. I use FB local groups not the main marketplace, but have had a few suss enquiries. Check their profile. Meet in public if possible, though I read a story of a woman who was robbed by an accomplice, or have other people around if it's at home.

Also why does the headline need to say they are a Coles worker?
 
I have sold quite a few things on FB and had no problems - I can see that I may just be lucky in having genuine people as my purchasers.

I may well be selling my loved 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer and have it in the back of my mind that it could be an issue as my model is liked by the younger generation and it has low milage and in a great condition !! not to say they are the only ones to be a problem but I may have to think twice about it!!
 
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Report the car stolen if I stole your car from your home you would report it stole immediately to police and insurance company What’s the difference here it’s stolen
And they gave them the keys it’s the same as having the car stolen when you have left the keys inside the insurance company’s won’t cover your claim.
 
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Report the car stolen if I stole your car from your home you would report it stole immediately to police and insurance company What’s the difference here it’s stolen
Of course it gets reported to police and insurance, but that has already been said! My comment is about avoiding the risks where possible to possibly avoid the car being stolen!.
 
I have sold 2 cars via Facebook, but both times I've had my 30+ 6ft 2 son with me when someone has come to look. I would never do it on my own for this very reason.
Very wise good thinking never trust with cars or motorcycles wher they want to test drive by themselves at the end of the day the car is stolen if someone breaks in to your house a steals keys to second car it is stolen isn’t it
 
sad but I bet she is not even 50 maybe +. very stupid handing over keys without some good verification.
 

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