What do you do? (a little long)

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Thread: What do you do? (a little long)

  1. #1
    Member Array wraymusicman's Avatar
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    What do you do? (a little long)

    WHEAT RIDGE - Police are warning residents about a suspicious man who has tried to lure children away at least three times with stories of a lost puppy or an invitation to see a dog.

    The Wheat Ridge Police Department issued a media release Thursday evening, encouraging residents to watch out for a 45 to 55 year old man, described as white with a tan. Witnesses told police he is thin, about 5-foot-10-inches tall and has short or balding hair.

    Police believe the man has approached children three times at the following locations:
    -4300 block of Field Street at a vacant lot in a residential area
    -11700 block of W. 34th Avenue at a park by the restrooms
    -3900 block of Wadsworth Boulevard at a McDonald's Restaurant

    Police say each incident happened in the mid-afternoon and the man approached the children with stories about a lost puppy or going to see one. All of the victims so far have been seven to 10-year-old females and the man has asked them personal questions, according to investigators. None of the victims were hurt.

    According to descriptions of the suspect, he wore different clothing in each incident and no vehicle was seen.

    Anyone with information about the man is asked to call the Wheat Ridge Police Department's tip line at 303-235-2947 or call 911.

    (KUSA-TV 2010 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)



    Scenerio #1- after watching this story on the news the other night, you are eating lunch in a Burger King that happens to be in this part of town. As you're chowing down on your Whopper and fries, your attention is drawn to a young girl (you guess about 5 y/o) talking to a rather nervous looking older man kneeling down in front of her. They are too far away and the room too crowded to hear what is being said. The girl is looking around the room, and continues to do so even as the man takes her hand and starts walking across the resturant with her. They are going to pass close by where you are sitting, then it's just a couple of steps and they're out the door.

    Scenerio #2 - same as above, except that you recognize the girl as someone in your neighborhood, or maybe from church (you aren't quite sure). You don't remember her name, but can't recall ever seeing her with this man.

    Scenerio #3 - You know this young girl fairly well, and her immediate family (siblings and parents). You've never seen her with this man.


    You are armed with your EDC, cell phone, and a hot cup of coffee. Unfortunately you can't follow them, since you walked over from work. What do you do? How does your reaction differ with each scenerio - or does it?
    What the **** - How did I end up on this soapbox again?!?!?

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  3. #2
    Distinguished Member Array ErnieNWillis's Avatar
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    I would approach the man and the little girl and ask the man a random question to guage his demeanor. If he appeared nervous or jumpy I'd be a lot more suspicious and I'd ask the little girl if she was ok. If she said no or the guy tried to take off I'd get a description of his vehicle and liscence plate number and call the police immediately.

  4. #3
    Member Array mech's Avatar
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    I'm a parent, and I gotta tell ya, kneeling down, trying to calm a child that is about to erupt into a tear filled fit can be nerve racking, so bare that in mind when confronted with a situation like this.

    As to my reaction, I'd approach, ask the little girl if she was ok.
    If the dude bolts, first thing would be to ensure the little girl is secure and reunited with whom she belongs. If it is possible to reaquire the dirtbag, catch up and get as much info as possible to pass on to LEO.
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    Member Array TheChief94's Avatar
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    +1 with Mech. I would ask if she were ok, and if she knew the gentleman...if the answers were "NO" there is no way that little girl would leave that restaurant with him until the Police cleared it up. I would be on the phone to them as soon as it became clear that she was in extremis, and information would be gathered as to vehicle, tag, color, direction of travel (if he scampered off) immediately. I would take the heat at work, as her safety would supersede the boss' lunch hour rules...

    "Overly protective" parent of 5, grandparent of 7...
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  6. #5
    Member Array MSteve's Avatar
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    In situation 3, if I have that much info about the girl, then I scan the room for one of those people (parents/siblings). If I see one of them I get their attention. If not, I'd go say hi to her, by name, and talk to him and see where it goes from there. This may end up with one of us explaining the situation with the cops.

    In the first two, I might think something is up, but I have no real right to do much. If I'm that worried about it, I might make a note about some of the important details just in case. I might even walk up to the guy and say hello. That might be enough to spook him, might not. If I'm still really concered, I might go up and ask the cashier if he/she saw who the kid came in with. If I'm still concerned, I might walk out and see how getting the kid in the car goes and if there is a booster seat or something else to tell me that's a car it's supposed to be in. Get a plate number. If it still looks shady, I might call the cops at this point, but I think it'd be a stretch.

    Specifically in scenario 1, it could be a grand parent for all I know. The behavior you describe is something I've seen many time, including with my own kid's grand parent. Even people who have had kids, when they haven't dealt with a 5 year old in 40-50 years can be a little awkward with them, especially if the kid just got done having a fit you may have not seen. Then there's the fact that my 4 year old can't look me in the eye for 30 seconds when I talk to him. He's always looking around at everything. Not sure how much that improves at 5.

    In scenario 2, I've been that man. I spent 18 months away from my family for training and a deployment. It would be perfectly reasonable for you to have seen my wife and kid around the neighborhood, church, the local park, wherever, and never have seen me. Now, I'm the kind of person who, if you'd called 911 and I had to explain to a cop that I was the father, I probably would have thanked you for your concern and we'd have had a good laugh. Others, maybe not so much. I could tell you horror stories about my first several weeks home, being at parks, the mall, etc with him screaming "mommy, mommy, mommy" at the top of his lungs, while I, embarassed as could be, had to physically pick him up and carry him out because it was time to go (try adding that to your scenario). I've got several peers with similar experiences after homecoming.
    Last edited by MSteve; June 4th, 2010 at 03:38 PM. Reason: typos
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  7. #6
    Member Array mech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSteve View Post
    In scenario 2, I've been that man. I spent 18 months away from my family for training and a deployment. It would be perfectly reasonable for you to have seen my wife and kid around the neighborhood, church, the local park, wherever, and never have seen me. Now, I'm the kind of person who, if you'd called 911 and I had to explain to a cop that I was the father, I probably would have thanked you for your concern and we'd have had a good laugh. Others, maybe not so much. I could tell you horror stories about my first several weeks home, being at parks, the mall, etc with him screaming "mommy, mommy, mommy" at the top of his lungs, while I, embarrassed as could be, had to physically pick him up and carry him out because it was time to go (try adding that to your scenario). I've got several peers with similar experiences after homecoming.
    First, THANK YOU for your service and sacrifice.
    Second, you wouldn't bolt when confronted and TBH, these situations need to be viewed through very critical eyes. Making the wrong call, either way, can be awkward at best, fatal or life altering (for the victim) at worst. I'd rather verify to protect the little girl or boy for that matter and hell, I'll buy you a beer or three after for the inconvenience.

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  8. #7
    Member Array Superfly's Avatar
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    One of my nieces when upset would yell "I want my mommy" even if mommy was the one trying to calm her down. It is funny now that she grew out of it, but not so much when it was happening.

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    Member Array scorpion12's Avatar
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    Pretty touchy situations all three with #1 and #2 being more delicate... we don't know the situation...

    If there's something enough to make the spider sense go all tingly, then there's probably reason enough to get the police involved... at least the store manager to go over and try to delay...

    Break out your cell phone and start taking video of the situation... then call the cops.

  10. #9
    Distinguished Member Array bladenbullet's Avatar
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    if i'm that worried about whats going on i would approach with a question and compliment about what good looking young lady they are and who this lucky guy theyre with is...simple question and i would expect the man to answer with something like "i'm her grandpa" if hes for real...otherwise i'm guessing hes bugging out at that point cause when the kid comes clean with "i dont know him" theres gonna be some questions like "who are you here with honey?" and the like....i'm guessing thats enough to cool any bad guys jets...if it goes south that way and he leaves i'm finding her parents and explaining what i saw and leaving it up to them...

    i would have to have a real sour and strong feeling to involve 911...there are a lot of older folks who just enjoy talking to kids...my daughter attracts them all the time...and as creepy as it is at times you come to realize theyre just lonely old folk who enjoy talking to little nes because they remind them of their own when they were young...

  11. #10
    Member Array TangoMonkey's Avatar
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    As a father of two beautiful girls, if you call the police or stop me because you think something is amiss, I may be annoyed, but I will be happy to know someone is doing the right thing. If it is my daughter but the man is a BG, I would be forever in your debt if you stop them and start asking questions. Either way the risk of a little embarassment is worth a childs life.

    As for me, I would stop them and ask the little girl if she is Ok. I would hope my wife is there. Women tend to be less treatening when dealing with children.

    If you ever see this play out, please, doing something.

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    Senior Member Array CCWFlaRuger's Avatar
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    Scenerio #1- after watching this story on the news the other night, you are eating lunch in a Burger King that happens to be in this part of town. As you're chowing down on your Whopper and fries, your attention is drawn to a young girl (you guess about 5 y/o) talking to a rather nervous looking older man kneeling down in front of her. They are too far away and the room too crowded to hear what is being said. The girl is looking around the room, and continues to do so even as the man takes her hand and starts walking across the resturant with her. They are going to pass close by where you are sitting, then it's just a couple of steps and they're out the door.
    Take pics of the old guy and his tag with my phone and call the police with the tip so that they can investigate.

    Scenerio #2 - same as above, except that you recognize the girl as someone in your neighborhood, or maybe from church (you aren't quite sure). You don't remember her name, but can't recall ever seeing her with this man.
    Stop and ask a question "Don't I know you from church? Who is your friend?" and procede from there.

    Scenerio #3 - You know this young girl fairly well, and her immediate family (siblings and parents). You've never seen her with this man.
    Stop them until I have spoken to her parents and procede from there.

    The CCW does not make me a Law Enforcement Officer, I cannot detain the man, and most certainly cannot brandish, unless there is imminent, reasonable threat of serious injury, or death. I do not know the man, I cannot speak to his intentions, and nothing in OP's scenario has defined any reason why having, or not having my weapon would make any difference in my actions.
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  13. #12
    VIP Member Array Sticks's Avatar
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    In all 3 situations, I would already have 911 on the line and informing them that someone matching the suspected abductors description as seen on the news is at "X" location and appears to be trying to leave with a child. I'd then catch up to them before they leave and ask the child if they know the guy - 911 is still on the line.

    Regardless of the response, "The child is not going anywhere until the police arrive.", which will be relatively quick given the recent current events. If I'm wrong, all I've done is delayed someone on legitimate business for a few minuets while the police sort it out.

    Beyond that the ball is in the adults court now, and my attention is 100% on them. The only way my EDC is coming into play is if the other person attempts to produce a weapon. The variables get to numerous from there.
    Sticks

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    A person who is incapable of independent thought; a person who is herd animal-like in behavior; one who cannot distinguish between right and wrong; a foolish person.
    See also Sheep

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    911 first and then contact them. These type people hate attention. Even a simple greeting like stated above stay with them. Take pics whatever you can do call the manager of the store takes up time to keep him there.
    If when all said and done the guy or family gets pissed so be it will apologize and go on about my business.
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  15. #14
    Distinguished Member Array Paymeister's Avatar
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    You might enjoy this thread from some time ago: I was in a sandwich shop and was concerned about a possible 'lure-then-abduct' scenario. Turns out it was the girl's dad and I felt like an idiot for approaching them.

    But I like the 'don't I know you from church?' approach: it's plausible, and will give you a chance to gauge his demeanor on any challenge. I could certainly imagine calling 911, though, if a bad guy with similar appearance had been reported as active in the area. Sure, it's likely a waste of time for the cops and a pain for him, but I hear Bubba is lonely there in the pen and I want to do what I can to help.
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