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Months after Craigslist purchase turned deadly, widow speaks out

Months After Craigslist Purchase Turned Deadly, Young Widow Speaks Out


Four months after her husband died in a Craigslist purchase gone bad, a young widow is speaking out for change in the community, FOX59 reports.

Before Jim Vester's death in December, violence was the last thing on his wife Jamie's mind.

"(I) paid attention to it but it didn't really ... hit me until ... it actually happened. Now I'm very aware of everything that's been going on," Jamie Vester said.

Sgt. First Class Jim Vester, who served in the Indiana National Guard, was answering a Craigslist ad to buy an iPad as a Christmas present. Two teenage brothers were later charged with ambushing Vester, shooting and killing him.

"Jim was always helping people and he still is, because this story is still going," Jamie said.

Not only has his story showed the dangers of buying online, but it's changing now, pushing Jamie to reach out.

That became even more clear after recent violence left other women in the same position. In particular, Jamie reached out to Jennifer Trapuzzano, whose husband Nathan was murdered on his daily walk April 1.

"She is the only person who knows what I went through and I know what she's going through," Vester said.

In mementos and photos, even more than the typical family since Jamie is a wedding photographer, she still has Jim with her. She especially remembers his great cooking and loud, lovable personality.

"Jim was a big storyteller. He could tell any story and it would be really funny," Vester said.

Now, it's become her story. One she's using to bring this message to you: reach out, be a mentor and help change your community.

"I'm really calling out to the males to get out there and mentor those boys and maybe we could prevent some of this violence," Vester said. "Every single person could use somebody to love them and be there for them."

To see more of Jamie's message, read her recent blog post here.

Join the discussion

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happy2bgridfree April 14 2014 at 12:06 PM

Never go to somebody's home when you purchase on Craigslist. Also, never have someone come to YOUR home. Meet at a popular public area or, better yet, in the parking lot of your local police station. Never give your address or your phone number. Communicate via email ONLY.

If the article is large and you MUST go to the location, do not go alone and, if possible, ask that the item be brought outside. Avoid going into the home if you can.

Flag Reply +5 rate up
jh April 14 2014 at 9:15 PM

Those stinking thugs need to be fing executed now.Shoot them in the head.

Flag Reply +11 rate up
jwatson611 April 14 2014 at 10:52 AM

Stay away from Craigslist. Too many weirdo's on that site. It's sad because it has ruined it for all the honest people out there.

I feel so sorry for this young wife and her baby. A good guy just buying a Christmas present. It shouldn't of ended up like this. These two thugs need to go to jail for life.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Suzanne April 14 2014 at 8:55 PM

Disgusting scumbags

Flag Reply +7 rate up
tdiplaci April 14 2014 at 2:31 PM

They should tear out those sickening dreadlocks one at a time and then give each punk 100 lashes with a bull whip. If they do not die from the whipping they should be hung.

Flag Reply +9 rate up
1 reply
Newquest tdiplaci April 14 2014 at 2:56 PM

Just so you understand, they aren't guilty because they are Black. For whatever reason, they committed a crime, they could have been white or hispanic or whatever.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
texann427 April 14 2014 at 11:09 AM

I inherited my brothers Estate & have sold thousands of dollars of stuff on Craigslist. I always meet in a public place like the mall but still, this article scares the crap out of me when I think about the chances i've taken!! and I still have alot of stuff to sell....

Flag Reply +7 rate up
donpantanella April 14 2014 at 2:41 PM

and this is why Texas has the death penalty.....and uses it.

Flag Reply +12 rate up
1 reply
franksmoody donpantanella April 14 2014 at 3:04 PM

I'm glad they use it.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
JuneBug April 14 2014 at 12:12 PM

What worries me is the lonely women that are going out to meet men from the personals on Craigslist. Lonely women answer ads or lonely murderers, rapers, serial killers place ads with pictures of some cute hunks they stole are putting ads in personal ads trying to attract victims. They talk, they schmooze and finally set up a meeting. Unfortunately they set up meetings with 8 or 9 lonely women and who knows what happens. BEWARE: THERE ARE MORE CREEPS OUR THERE ABUSING CRAIGSLIST THAN WONDERFUL GUYS. Don't lose your life to one of these creeps.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
Carole JuneBug April 14 2014 at 12:55 PM

This is true of many online dating sites as well. Anyone can pretend to be anywhere and anyone. online. People prey on those they perceive as vulnerable and naive. Predators are not gender specific. Both men and women have been victims.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
Higher Land April 14 2014 at 8:34 PM

This guy would have earned at least $1 million during his working years.He would pay taxes,support the community,raise a family,buy cars,house,toys for the kids. What a loss. R.I.P

Flag Reply +12 rate up
KatsKorner50 April 14 2014 at 10:54 AM

You have to meet somewhere public to make any exchanges or refuse the purchace. How sad that a child had to loose his father for this point to be driven home. So sad. Those guys are such scum.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
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