Thieves in Missouri used an in-game item to lure players to a Pokéstop, then robbed them.
Still playing Pokémon Go? It's the weekend. We don't know why you're reading this when you could be running (or driving) around your neighborhood, catching up on all your local Pokéstops, and scanning around for new little creatures to catch (or gyms to battle at).
In fact, we recommend you go out during the daylight hours for all your Pokémon needs, because it seems that people are preying on those foolish enough to wander around not-so-safe neighborhoods in the wee hours of the morning. Instead of these aspiring trainers catching Pokémon, robbers are catching themand stealing their stuff.
At least, that's what appears to be happening in St. Louis, Missouri, and it could just as easily happen plenty of other places, too. According to the O'Fallon Police Department, would-be thieves are using features in the game designed to lure more Pokemon to particular locations to lure players to these locations to rob them. The department has recorded around eight or nine Pokémon-themed robberies so far.
"This morning at approximately 2 am we responded to the report of an Armed Robbery near the intersection of Highway K and Feise Road. We were able to locate four suspects occupying a black BMW a short time later and recover a handgun. These suspects are suspected of multiple Armed Robberies both in St. Louis and St. Charles Counties. It is believed these suspects targeted their victims through the Pokemon Go smart phone application," reads a Facebook post from the O'Fallon Police Department today.
"Many of you have asked how the app was used to rob victims, the way we believe it was used is you can add a beacon to a pokestop to lure more players. Apparently they were using the app to locate ppl standing around in the middle of a parking lot or whatever other location they were in," the department added.
Our advice? Don't go walking around neighborhoods late at night for your Pokémon fix. That, or borrow some rules from trick-or-treating: go with a big group of fellow Pokémon fanatics, which will let more people share in the rewards and be a lot more fun for everyone involved. Above all else, just use some common sense. If you can collect Pokémon and hit up Pokéstops in public, crowded areas, we recommend doing that instead of shady spots at 2 a.m. Try to avoid some of the weirder areas, too.