Man shot while trying to buy car in Merced, police say

MERCED, Calif. (KFSN) -- Merced police are reminding the public to be vigilant when buying and selling items on social media sites after a man was robbed and shot Monday night.

Officials say a 25-year-old man from out of town drove to Merced with a friend to meet a man and buy a car just before 10 pm.

But when he showed up near East 22nd and Weston Way, a man demanded money and shot the victim in the leg.

The victim got back in the vehicle with his friend and left the area while calling police.

The victim was taken to a hospital where he was later released.

The Merced Police Department is now reminding people to utilize a safe, well-lit area when buying or selling things on social media.

The police station has a safe exchange zone right out front that is under surveillance 24 hours a day.

"Here we have a lot of cameras, it's a well-lit area, officers come and go 24 hours a day from this building," says Merced Police Lt. Joseph Perez. "There's also a dispatch call box right over here next to this zone, so if anything becomes suspicious or doesn't feel right, you have those resources available to you and it'll make you safe."

Authorities say the suspect described as a heavy-set Hispanic man with wavy hair.

Officials say as the victim tried to get away, he collided with the suspect's vehicle, so the suspect vehicle, only described as a dark-colored sedan, should also have front-end damage. Anyone with information is asked to call Merced Police.
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