Social Media – Dating Sites and their Relationship to Sexual Assaults

In our ever changing world of technology, and our very busy lives, people are increasingly using dating and social media sites and apps to meet up with people.  What was once considered a new way to meet people is now normal.

This past year Dallas Police Detectives have seen predators using social media, online classified ads, and dating sites to meet up with their victims. These criminals are exploiting the willingness to meet up by lying about who they are, their identity, appearance and their intentions. 

What we are asking here today is for people to take a little more precaution when meeting up with people on social media and dating sites.

  • Never meet someone out alone without telling a friend or loved one where you will be.
  • Meet in a public place with plenty of people around.
  • Do your homework, find out whom else knows this person.
  • Take screen shots of their profile should you need it to identify the individual.
  • Trust your instincts, if at any point you feel uncomfortable about the situation or conversation, leave.
  • If it’s too good to be true, it’s probably not true.

During our investigations of the sexual assault cases we have worked, it must be repeated over and over that our victims did nothing wrong by using these sites; it is human nature to want to trust people.  We hope that by offering up some of the lessons learned from past victims, that we can help prevent another crime from occurring. 

If you have been a victim of a sexual assault through a social media/dating site, please contact the Dallas Police Sexual Assault Unit at 214-671-3584.