Exchange zone opened

Published 8:56 am Thursday, February 18, 2016

With the rise of selling and trading of merchandise online, the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Department has designated a safe exchange location on department property.

According to information provided by the sheriff’s department, “with this exchange zone, there is security for citizens while they are conducting their business. The exchange zone is located in front of the sheriff’s office. It is a very accessible and public location, as well as having 24-hour surveillance.”

The department said the new zone is provided due to the volume of business being conducted over the Internet and for the safety of individuals who may be hesitant about providing personal information and meeting to do business.

Charlotte Court House resident Tara Estep said, “I’ve always met at a public place, Dollar General or Corner Market; anywhere I knew there were going to be people and only during the daytime, because of the fact I wasn’t comfortable meeting strangers by myself.”

Estep is just one of many residents who utilizes local Facebook yard sale groups to buy and sell goods online.

County resident Desiree Evans Lee said while she also uses these groups, she always takes precautionary measures and never goes to meet anyone without her husband in broad daylight.

“I also choose to meet at an occupied area, like Dollar General, or a place like that in town,” said Lee. “I do think that a safe meeting spot is a great idea for those who don’t have someone to go with them.”

The exchange zone was made possible by Sheriff Thomas D. Jones.

For more information about the exchange zone, contact the sheriff’s department at (434) 542-5141.