This week, a local man was robbed after responding to a Craigslist ad in a New Bedford housing development.

A motion filed last month by Ward Five City Councilor Kerry Winterson could have prevented that crime. Winterson proposed establishing city police stations as "safe zones" for pre-arranged transactions.

Winterson says the process would be as simple as walking into the station and informing the desk sergeant of the exchange. "That's all you have to do. There's no questions asked thereafter. And you could just basically write up your bill of sale, or whatever you have to do, and you just make the transaction right there," said Winterson. "If the other party isn't willing to do that, that's a red sign for you."

The proposal is based on a similar piece of legislation that was passed in Rhode Island.

Winterson says the motion remains in the Council's Appointments and Briefings Committee.