Swapping safe: A ‘swap spot’ parking space at Forest Lake City Hall for transactions, exchanges
It may just be a designated parking space, but the Forest Lake Police Department has high hopes that a recent program instituted at City Hall could reduce local crime related to online sales and custody disputes.
At the end of October, the department placed a sign that reads “Swap Spot” next to a space in the parking lot in front of the Forest Lake City Center. According to Detective Ashley LaValle, anyone who is buying or selling something via local commerce websites like Craigslist or social media sites like Facebook can use the spot as a designated pickup location if money or property will be exchanged in person.
“We’ve offered this spot to the public in the hopes to deter criminals from scamming, stealing or exchanging things like stolen property,” she said.
The spot is within view of city center security cameras and police headquarters, a fact which LaValle said will hopefully make potential criminals nervous about engaging in illegal activity.