Beacon Journal staff report
A Lakemore man who was arrested following a standoff with police last weekend is now accused of using Craigslist to lure prospective tenants to a nonexistent rental property.
James Barrett, 41, was charged this week with two felony theft charges. Springfield police detectives said at least three people said they responded to an ad on the website offering a house for rent on Springfield Lake Drive.
Police say the property is owned by Barrett, who posted the ad, accepted deposits, but never intended to rent his house. Police believe there may be other similar cases and ask that potential victims contact detectives at 330-784-1609. Barrett was originally arrested Saturday after he barricaded himself inside his home and would not comply with repeated requests to surrender, police said.
Officers were there to serve an arrest warrant for a previous aggravated menacing case. Metro SWAT officers were sent to the home and Barrett was arrested, ending the three-hour standoff.
He was charged with obstructing justice and inducing panic.