49-year-old Richard F. Renfrew of Brandon, Vermont, was recently arrested for allegedly trying to have his girlfriend raped by a man he met on craigslist. Renfrew is said to have been in communication with the man who believed this was some type of fantasy roleplay scenario. That was until Renfrew reportedly told the man he would need to tie up Renfrew’s girlfriend and sexually assault her and she was not aware of this plan. For once, the man who Renfrew was talking with contacted police instead of going through with it.
I say for once because there have been a number of cases where husbands have either tried to have wives raped by someone on craigslist or did have them raped. The ones that immediately jump to mind are Justin Crawford, who tried to have his wife raped, and an unnamed man from Kannapolis, North Carolina, who actually did have his wife raped by someone from craigslist. Then there’s also the case of James Jebediah Stipe, who had his ex-girlfriend raped as an act of revenge from a number of states away from where she lived. I’m sure there are others I’m forgetting as well. I refer to these as rapes by proxy.
Renfrew’s attorney is claiming no law was broken and this was all just a ‘fantasy’. However, when the girlfriend was approached by investigators, she is said to have claimed she had no knowledge of this plot and had never engaged in such activity before. So technically this could be a fantasy, but a one-sided one from a very sick individual. Thankfully the man in contact with Renfrew called the police. Too many people would probably have been willing to go through with it believing anything they read on craigslist. Remember everyone, the craigslist rape fantasy is a lie.
UPDATE 4/30/2019: Renfrew has pleaded guilty to a felony count of attempting to procure someone to commit a felony. However, his sentence has been deferred for a year giving Renfrew the opportunity to seek mental help. Renfrew’s record does not show any similar behavior to these charges. Hopefully, he will seek treatment and not become yet another craigslist repeat offender.