33-year old Gregory John Schaffer said he owned 4 stores at Newport Center Mall. He also said he name was John Archambeault. Police say he was lying about all of it, and that he used his made-up story to lure a 15-year old girl from Brooklyn to his office, where he raped her.
"There really are people out there who want to hurt our young people," online safety expert Parry Aftab said.
Aftab is an online safety expert who encourages parents to teach their children how to stay safe online. Police say in mid-March, the 15-year old girl from Brooklyn went on Craigslist and posted "Teen in need of an afterschool & weekend job (NYC)."
Schaffer, posing as John Archambeault, responded, "Looking for part time help in my store in Newport Mall in Jersey City. Can you send info and let me know if you are interested in it."
"Make sure you've checked out the person you're meeting. You need to find out who they are. Google them, call the police, see if they have a record," Aftab said.
The teen emailed her resume and a photo. Schaffer apparently emailed back that he had a job for her at Victoria's Secret at Newport Center Mall, which he falsely said he owned. The teen went to his Jersey City office with a friend for an interview, where she told police he asked her about her sex life and whether she had a boyfriend. Aftab says those inappropriate questions should have been a red flag.
"We've had trouble with people placing ads on Craigslist and forgetting about their common sense," Aftab explained.
The next day, investigators say the teen went back to Jersey City, alone, and met Schaffer to sign a 'contract.' Instead, police say he forced her to pose for photos in a skimpy bathing suit, and then raped her, telling her the contract she signed required it and that he would sue her family if she resisted. In Bayonne, where Schaffer used to live with his wife and son, one landlord said he'd been evicted for failing to pay his rent, and another former neighbor said he was disgusted by the charges.
Schaffer is in jail, being held without bail. Investigators say when they searched his office, they found other photos of young girls in bathing suits or lingerie. They suspect there are other victims.
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