We know full well that not every Craigslist story ends in horror. (More often they end with a great deal on furniture!). And yet it's impossible not to shudder at the story of a young Wisconsin woman who answered an ad on the site for free rent in exchange for cooking and cleaning.
The man, 45-year-old John Hopkins, picked up her from the airport and took her to his apartment in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn, but then he handcuffed her to a radiator and forced her to be his sex slave. For some reason, when she left the apartment after eight days of imprisonment for a job, she called her mother and not 911, but her mother alerted the authorities. She's being treated for serious medical effects from the torture he subjected her to.
Hopkins has been charged with rape, assault, and unlawful imprisonment.
Every once in awhile, someone will send us an ad in which a Craigslist poster will cheerfully evince utter sexism in seeking a home arrangement — that you have to cook and clean in your underwear or whatever. Clearly, even the more innocent-sounding arrangements can turn into a nightmare scenario. Each one of these stories might be isolated, but each one feels like a reminder that as a woman, you're never really safe. Especially when something's being offered for free. These actions can take place with more swiftness and anonymity than ever. Our thoughts are with the victim.
Craigslist 'Sex Slave' [NYPost]