CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- At least 40 people have been robbed in Charlotte this year while exchanging things bought online. In an effort to crack down these crimes, Charlotte- Mecklenburg Police has teamed up with QuikTrip to create a safe exchange program.

This program comes a few months after a beloved college baseball player was shot and killed in west Charlotte.
Zachary Finch was meeting up with someone to buy a phone when he was killed.

“Zachary was just trusting, and he just trusted the wrong people,” his mother, Tara Finch, said. “He was robbed of so much more than just money that day.”

Finch was using the LetGo app to purchase a phone. His family will never be the same, but they know Zach would want something positive to come from this.

“Zach was all about helping people, so if this safe exchange zone helps other people, Zach will be smiling down on us, I’m sure,” Finch said.

Because of the alarming trend of robberies, CMPD proposed the program to QuikTrip, which was quick to respond.

“Our effort is to reduce thefts, robberies, and violent crimes that are sometimes associated with these social media websites,” CMPD Sgt. Brian Scharf said.

QuikTrip agreed that it was a natural fit. “All of our locations are well-lit and they have state-of-the-art security systems at every location,” QuikTrip Division Manager Tom Takach said.

QT will have two designated parking spaces painted red. They’ll also be marked by a sign, in plain view of cameras.

The safe exchange zones are expected to be up and running within the next two weeks.

These designated areas will be found at 14 different QuikTrips throughout Charlotte.