A Chicago man has been arrested and charged with sexually assaulting and robbing women he met online.
Kashaun Massey, 23, was denied bail on Friday after being charged with sexually assaulting and robbing five women he met on the messaging app Snapchat.
The most recent assault happened on May 21 at Massey’s South Shore apartment. He was wearing a hood and a T-shirt over his face when a 22-year-old woman arrived at his home. He held her at gunpoint, stole her phone, and then sexually assaulted her. The woman was able to get away by suggesting they go to her house, then she sped off in her car before Massey could get inside. The woman went to a hospital and a sexual assault kit was performed.
Prosecutors allege that Massey met the woman on Snapchat and that he had previously assaulted four other women in a similar fashion. Massey was taken into custody at his home and was in possession of the phone allegedly used to have conversations with four of the victims.
Alleged Victim’s Assault Breakdown:
- On May 21, a 22-year-old woman met Massey at his home and stole her phone at gunpoint, and sexually assaulted her.
- On April 29, a 21-year-old woman met Massey at his home and was robbed at knifepoint
- On April 28, a 24-year-old woman met Massey outside his building and he allegedly grabbed her and tried to force her inside. The woman fought back, dropped her wallet and phone, and ran off when Massey went to pick them up.
- On March 25, a 28-year-old woman met him outside his building, and he allegedly robbed and sexually assaulted her at knifepoint. He transferred $525 of her money to his CashApp account from her phone.
- On March 21, a 23-year-old met with Massey in the 7400 block of South Euclid after talking on Snapchat. He allegedly stole the woman’s purse and sexually assaulted her.
Massey was charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault with a weapon, armed robbery, and robbery. He was denied bail and ordered to have no contact with any of the victims. He is scheduled to appear in court again on July 18, 2023.
Massey’s attorney argued that the case against his client was weak, citing a lack of surveillance footage of the attacks or physical evidence tying Massey to them. However, the judge ordered Massey to be held without bail, citing the seriousness of the charges and the risk that he would re-offend.
This is a serious case and it is important that the victims are able to get the justice they deserve. I hope that the prosecution can build a strong case against Massey and that he is held accountable for his alleged crimes.
Meeting Online Acquaintances IRL
These attacks serve as an important reminder of the potential risks associated with meeting people online, especially through mediums such as Snapchat. It is crucial that one exercises utmost caution when planning to meet someone they have connected with online, and takes appropriate measures to ensure their own personal safety.
Arrange a meet-up in a public place rather than a secluded location, and inform a close friend or family member of your whereabouts could serve as effective safeguards. Always carry a personal alarm or pepper spray. These can be helpful deterrents if you feel threatened.
Additionally, it is essential to be aware of your surroundings and rely on your instincts when interacting with virtual strangers. If at any point in time you begin to feel uneasy or apprehensive about the situation, it is vital that you trust your instincts and leave promptly.
Here are some safety tips for using Snapchat:
- Do not add strangers as friends. Only add people you know and trust in real life.
- Be careful about what information you share. Do not share your full name, address, or phone number with people you do not know.
- Be extremely cautious of IRL meetups. If you are meeting someone in person for the first time, do it in a public place and let a friend or family member know where you are going. Always carry self-defense tools such as pepper spray, stun guns, or a firearm to assist you in defending yourself if necessary.
- Use the “Ghost Mode” feature to control who can see your Snaps. Ghost Mode allows you to choose who can see your Snaps, including your Story.
- Use the “Snap Map” feature with caution. The Snap Map feature shows your location to your friends. If you are concerned about your privacy, you can disable the Snap Map feature.
- Be careful about what you send. Once you send a Snap, it is gone forever. Be careful about what you send to people, as it could be saved or shared by others.
- Report any suspicious activity. If you see something that makes you feel uncomfortable, report it to Snapchat.
Here are some additional safety tips for using social media in general:
- Be aware of the risks. Social media can be a great way to connect with friends and family, but it is important to be aware of the risks, such as cyberbullying, online predators, and identity theft.
- Use strong passwords. Your passwords should be long and complex, and you should never use the same password for multiple accounts.
- Be careful about what you share. Do not share personal information, such as your address or phone number, with people you do not know.
- Be wary of links. Do not click on links in messages from people you do not know. These links could lead to malicious websites.
- Be careful about what you download. Do not download apps or files from people you do not know. These files could contain malware.
- Be aware of your surroundings. If you are using social media in public, be aware of your surroundings and take precautions to protect your privacy.
- Report any suspicious activity. If you see something that makes you feel uncomfortable, report it to the social media platform or to the authorities.
By following these basic guidelines, you have a better chance of preventing potential risks and having a positive, safe online experience.
As always, be safe and be prepared.