Teen Robbed, Killed Answering Craigslist Ad: Cops

By R. Stickney, Monica Dean, Chris Chan and Michelle Wayland
|  Friday, May 13, 2011  |  Updated 5:52 AM PDT
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It was an emotional day at La Jolla High School as friends and teachers learned that a former student was robbed and killed.

It was an emotional day at La Jolla High School as friends and teachers learned that a former student was robbed and killed.

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Teen Shot, Killed Answering Craigslist Ad: Cops

Three teenagers are in custody in the shooting death of an 18-year old man in Paradise Hills Wednesday evening. Police said the victim and his girlfriend drove to Paradise Hills in response to an online classified ad posted on Craigslist. Monica Dean reports.
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It was an emotional day at La Jolla High School as friends and teachers learned that a former student was robbed and killed after answering a Craigslist advertisement.

San Diego police arrested three teens overnight on charges they robbed and killed Garrett Berki, 18, of Pacific Beach.

“Any time I needed someone to help me with my car, Garrett was the person to go to,”  said the victim’s friend Spencer Berke. “He was always into cars and he showed that passion a lot and so that’s why we were such good friends. We both loved cars.”

Berki was shot sitting behind the wheel of a car Wednesday night in Paradise Hills.

The 18-year-old and his girlfriend drove to Casey Street in Paradise Hills around 10:30 p.m. thinking they were going to buy and pickup an item for sale on Craiglist, friends said.

Investigators say when the couple got here, three men posing as sellers robbed them of their money and cell phones.

When the suspects drove off in a green Honda Accord, the couple followed in their vehicle hoping to get a license plate number investigators said.

Police say the two vehicles ended up in a cul-de-sac in the 3000 block of Artemia Way, one of the suspects opened fire and shot Berki in his car.

Berki was taken to a nearby hospital where he died according to friends.

The suspects drove off but crashed in the 3000 block of Fleming Way - about a block away from where the shooting happened police said.

The police used a helicopter officers to locate and arrest three, 17-year-old suspects who face robbery and murder charges and will be booked into juvenile hall. 

Berki's 18-year-old girlfriend was not injured police said.

Homicide investigators will meet with representatives from the District Attorney's office Thursday afternoon to decide if the teenagers will be tried as adults.

Officers said they will not divulge the item Berki and his girlfriend were trying to purchase.

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