Stranger joins me while running

This is a discussion on Stranger joins me while running within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I'm wondering about other's thoughts on a situation that occurred recently. It could be totally benign, or potential for danger. Either way, I'd like to ...

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    Member Array abigno99's Avatar
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    Stranger joins me while running

    I'm wondering about other's thoughts on a situation that occurred recently. It could be totally benign, or potential for danger. Either way, I'd like to know how others would handle.

    I was on a run with my SO and we slowed to a walk about half way through to enjoy the view. We were in a out of the way, secluded spot at about 1830, but it is well lit. There was a man, middle aged and in obvious running attire, that was running towards us. As he passed, he slowed to a walk about walked behind us by about 10 feet for about 400 feet. Of course I was looking over my shoulder the whole time, and there really wasn't anywhere to divert to. Eventually he started talking to us, just small talk. He walked a little faster and caught up with us, and just chatted about his running excursions etc. When we started running again, he decided to run with us (not really invited). He just continued to talk about his running habits the whole way back. I ran my normal route, back through well-lit, populated areas and broke off our run a few blocks from home. He said goodbye and kept running. At first my SO and I were uneasy about it, but after a few miles of talking the guy seemed pretty normal. He was also wearing a ring, was married and talked about his wife a bit.

    I was armed of course, and unfortunately he was on my right side the entire run. I was between him and my SO the entire time, but I couldn't unawkwardly shift him to my left side and my SO to my right side.

    Were my actions appropriate? Should I have tried to lose him earlier? If so, any ideas of how to do that? What would you have done?
    gatorbait51 and jesseyuh like this.

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    There are criminals, and then there are dorks with limited social skills.

    Don't be mean to dorks. Good on you for being on guard though.
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    VIP Member Array pittypat21's Avatar
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    A well meaning person can easily appear to be a bit of a creep sometimes.
    "Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet."
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    Senior Member Array Happypuppy's Avatar
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    It depends; in urban settings everyone seems to be a more on guard. In suburban and rural it's fairly common I find to find runners , walkers want to tag along. Sometimes there's long distances with few people and a lot of trail cover. It's done for safety in that case.

    A case in point a friend I have a friend that lives in a a semi rural setting.They live very close to a long trail. His wife is attractive and in her early 30s and often walks or runs on the trail. One day she was running along with her earphones and enjoying the day. There was one one on the trail except herself ; not at all uncommon for the time and day.

    After couple miles some youngsters rode up next to her on bicycles. They were riding one in front of her one trailing and one beside her they kept looking off to the trail side bushes. They looked like ok kids about 10-11 yrs old; She was still a bit alarmed. After a bit she asked one "'are you following me?" They said no, they were worried about her and the naked running parallel screened by the bushes.

    They had been riding a fairly long distance behind her and decided to catch up with her and keep him away. She was obviously freaking out she called her husband on her cell and he came and met her. On the way he called 911. The sheriff arrived after awhile and took a report from her and the boys.

    It turns out it was not the first report. No one had reported an attack but the same MO. They did find the guy hiding in bushes naked. He lived nearby and said he was nude sunbathing and " went for a walk". No one believed him but they had nothing to charge him that mattered. The deputy told him he was going to keep an eye out for him however

    She now carries a small taurus revolver in a fanny pack and is more aware. In this case she was very glad to have some companions that I suspect did protect her potentially. But there are some very creepy people as well.


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    VIP Member Array NC Bullseye's Avatar
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    I'd just casually mention that it's so nice to have someone to talk to since most people refuse to associate with people with my background and by the way do you have pets and anything sharp?.....
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    Being social doesn't make one a creep nor dork nor criminal. Many out there are more open and less suspicious than others. Some folks are just downright friendly, even to complete strangers.

    Being alert and aware is fine. Dwelling on it feeds paranoia. You did fine.

    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep...
    Retired USAF E-8. Avatar is OldVet from days long gone. Oh, to be young again.
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... "For What It's Worth" Buffalo Springfield

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    Maybe he didn't like jogging alone and thought safety in numbers was better.

    We'll all go out on walking trails, so that's two adults, a preschooler and a one-year-old in a stroller. People do talk to us, sometimes even stop their bikes to talk to us. Cute baby! Hey, nice Packers shirt. Is he out the rest of the season? Stuff like that. It's always good to be alert, but there are people who are just naturally friendly, and some are such tail-waggers that they have no idea they're slobbering and getting muddy paws all over you. Or maybe that guy is super crafty and likes to plan well in advance, because you'll get used to seeing him and let your guard down just a bit...

    Had some overnight hikers join us once. They were a father/young son minimalist backpackers, and they asked to join us when we ran into them halfway down the trail. We said ok. They showed up some cool gear and he talked his head off. That was years ago and he still says hello every once in a while through my hub's FB page.
    QKShooter likes this.
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    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Well, running for miles was your first mistake. Was your car in the shop?

    Just kidding. Sounds like you did just right, or at least, what I would have done.
    welder516, Tzadik and iguanadon like this.
    "Yet this government never of itself furthered any enterprise, but by the alacrity with which it got out of the way... The character inherent in the American people has done all that has been accomplished; and it would have done somewhat more, if the government had not sometimes got in its way."

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    A couple of things come to mind. Was your SO also armed? If you were the only one armed I would have moved over to put my SO between myself and the stranger to give me time to present my weapon if needed. That might look a bit strange but - who cares? If you are a female it seems quite reasonable for you to move onto the other side. If you were both armed - I would still arrange for the SO to be between the stranger and the myself. Even a dork should realize guys "defend" their SO from other guys in many subtle ways. Space is your friend.
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    Member Array jenatron's Avatar
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    Lol all the previous posters are nicer than me. If that were me I'd give a polite good-bye and turn around and go the opposite direction. It's not that I'm paranoid, I just don't cozy up with strangers so easily. But, I wouldn't go out running un-armed, especially not when it's dark. I've been creeped on by one too many guys walking around the neighborhood.
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    Distinguished Member Array sealteam20001's Avatar
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    Better to be safe than sorry!

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    That is the main reason i do not jog i don't want people to think i'm a creep
    NONAME762 and Spade115 like this.
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    Senior Member Array Chad0724's Avatar
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    sounds like he just wanted a friend... or a date :)

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    Member Array Stirling XD's Avatar
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    When I actually used to jog, it was always more fun jogging with someone. It passes the time and miles faster. When I did a lot of mountain biking and had the opportunity to join a group or even another lone biker, I would always take it. It always made thinks more interesting. But I wouldn't be surprised if I annoyed a few people in the process. Pretending to be a jogger seems like more work than most BGs are willing to do to rob someone. But if he did in fact have bad intentions, chances are it is way worse than robbery.

    But if you did feel the need to separate from him without coming across as a complete jerk, you could say something like this. "No offense buddy, but my wife/girlfriend and I were in the middle of a serious and private conversation. So if you don't mind we're going to walk for a little while and let you get on with your run."

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    Member Array Rattlehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
    Being social doesn't make one a creep nor dork nor criminal. Many out there are more open and less suspicious than others. Some folks are just downright friendly, even to complete strangers.

    Being alert and aware is fine. Dwelling on it feeds paranoia. You did fine.

    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep...
    ... and some people are just kinda strange and socially awkward. Is he a neighbor? Might be a chance to get to know him better... (if only to know who's out and about when you're on a run)
    tcox4freedom likes this.

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