Online dating police officers
Like couples all around the region, Loren West and Dustin Smith followed the tragic story of David Messerschmitt. The intellectual-property lawyer was found stabbed to death inside a room at a boutique hotel in downtown Washington. “I feel so bad for his wife,” Smith said.d they are gay men, who met online, and are now married.Then more became clear: The February evening he went missing, Messerschmitt had texted his wife saying he’d be home soon; hotel surveillance video showed a mysterious figure climbing a staircase toward his room; court records revealed Messerschmitt, 30, had posted on Craigslist seeking sex with men; police thought he was targeted in a robbery that went bad. “In this day and age, you never really know who you’re meeting,” Smith said.One of the first responses was immediate, sex-laced and off-putting. “I’m going to do a stakeout,” he remembered thinking.
Around the same time, some online dating companies headed in a new direction, linked to advancing smartphone technology. The two continued to exchange messages, talking about their professions and sending photos of their dogs.
For predators, the calculation is simple: If someone doesn’t want to show an identity online, he will be less likely to report an assault or robbery.