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Austin police seeking leads on man targeting area Realtors

Man posing as client

As reported by KVUE News above, Austin police are investigating various reports from female real estate agents in Austin alleging a man described as a 5’9″ bald African American, falsely claiming to work at a local hospital, usually donning scrubs.

Police believe this man could be the same person they’ve been looking for since April who has posed as a condo buyer who set an appointment with a female Realtor and upon arrival, he had stashed an air mattress and restraints. Realtors say a man fitting the same description may have attempted similar crimes in Austin as many as five times this year. Collectively, the real estate community did not know about the potential attacks today.

“There’s some very bad and scary stories that have happened here in Austin with real estate agents getting killed. More recently there was a very scary incident in San Antonio just before Christmas with a woman who was attacked. So you know these need to be on the front of our brain and people need to be ready to react,” said Austin Realtor, Cord Shiflet.

Disturbing trend – violence against Realtors

“This report is another example of the disturbing trend we have seen over the past year in the real estate industry,” says Conal Campbell Director of Alliances at Moby. “We are in Austin this week working with the Texas Association of REALTORS and Keller Williams to enhance their respective safety strategies and programs in an effort to address what is clearly a national issue.”

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We recently reported that violence against Realtors is on the rise and unfortunately, many incidents began as simple robberies and ended in murder, heightening the real estate industry’s awareness of safety as the National Association of Realtors observes Safety Month. Realtors are encouraged to take safety precautions like having a personal safety app installed on smartphones, self defense class, the buddy system and the like.

Austin Realtors who believe they have interacted with the suspect should contact the Austin Police Department.

Tara Steele is the News Director at The American Genius, covering entrepreneur, real estate, technology news and everything in between. If you'd like to reach Tara with a question, comment, press release or hot news tip, simply click the link below.

19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. Jason Blackburn

    September 20, 2011 at 10:54 am

    As someone that is the son of a female agent and has many female friends that are agents security and safety are always on my mind. I would really like to see some sort of law passed that requires buyers to provide ID that is recorded to the broker prior to scheduling showings. While I realize that this would be inconvenient, the inconvenience would be a small price to pay for removing the "easy target" that a female agent presents.

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