Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/10/30/craigslist_murder/

Woman murdered after answering Craigslist ad

24-year-old sought babysitting job

By Dan Goodin

Posted in Security, 30th October 2007 00:10 GMT

A Minnesota woman was killed after answering a nanny job advertised on Craigslist. It is the first murder on the site, which offers free classified ads hawking just about anything you can imagine.

Katherine Ann Olson, 24, was found dead in the trunk of her car late Friday night at a park about 15 miles south of Minneapolis. She was last seen on Thursday morning, when she went to meet what she believed was a couple who recently relocated to the area and was in need of a babysitter, according to news reports.

Police have arrested a 19-year-old man they believe placed the ad. They have declined to identify the suspect except to say he worked at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. He was arrested there Friday night.

Like a lot of online bazaars, Craigslist has its fair share of illegal activity. Prostitutes have long advertised their services there, and it's also been used by fraudsters pushing 419 schemes and other types of scams. It's the first known time the site has been used to lure a victim of murder.

"I can't recall a single case like it," Craigslist founder Craig Newmark told KARE 11 News. "I'd like to express my condolences. This is a real tragedy and we're more eager than ever to help deal with the bad guy."

Olson had landed two previous nanny jobs through Craigslist, including one in Turkey, according to reports.

Earlier on Friday, Olson's purse had been found in a trash can not far from where her body was recovered. Police later found a blood-soaked towel in the same can. Police haven't disclosed a cause of death. ®