March 16th, 2009 01:10 AM
Last night at Safeway
I'll just tell this as it happened in chronological order:
It's just past 1am (yay for finals week ), and there's only one checkstand open. I'm waiting in line behind 4 other people when I notice Guy 1.
Guy 1 reads some little magazine thing at the "front" side of the store, past the end of the checkout stand and to the left. Black male in his late 30s or early 40s, baseball cap, no groceries. Looks a bit out of place, but I figure he's just catching up on an article or something (yeah right, I think now). I'm watching him from the checkout line. It's just past 1am, and there's only one checkstand open. I also notice that the security guard who's there every time I go into this Safeway in the evening is not posted. He usually stands near where Guy 1 is, but a bit closer to the front doors. I recognize this as unusual, scan briefly, and figure he's probably just using the restroom or something.
I check out. I have 3 plastic bags in my hands full of groceries. I'm at the end of the checkout stand, about 20-30ft from the sliding doors at the front of the store (this is a small Safeway).
I hear voices being raised behind me and a couple other people look to see it just as I move to do the same. I turn and see the security guard and Guy 2. It seems sort of surreal - very out-of-place. Like what's happening "couldn't" be happening in this little Safeway (I don't mean that literally, but it seemed like there was a shift from "Safeway checkstand land" on one side to "verbal altercation land" when I turned around.
Guy 2: black male, black-and-beige leather coat with "Saints" written on the front, ballcap, blue or black jeans, same relative age as Guy 1. Probably 180-200lbs, almost(?) 6ft.
The first thing I remember the security guard saying is "Yeah? You're gonna hit me? (Louder) YOU'RE GONNA HIT ME? WHAT? (LOUDER) COME EERE!" While he said this, he was walking toward Guy 2. Immediately after shouting "Come eere!," he full-out ran at Guy 2. Guy 2 ran past the checkstands further from the door, past me, and out the front door. He knocked into a metal stand with an ad or something on it and it swung back and forth in his wake.
While he was running toward me, I was trying to decide whether to get in this guy's way and try to take him down or stop him somehow, stay put and try not to make myself a target (moving object more visible?), or scurry out of the way and maybe hurt myself (I forgot what was behind me after I started focusing on what I was watching in front of me).
I ended up sort of staying put, but pushing up against the end of the checkstand behind me. The guy seemed to have no regard for anything but "get out of the store." He ran like he was stealing home plate in the world series.
The security guard stopped chasing him at the sidewalk (store policy/liability issue/legal thing) and was egging him on to come back on the premises. He took a stun gun out and was sparking/cracking it while trying to talk Guy 2 (and Guy 1, I guess, who I later saw with Guy 2 walking away down the street after this was all over).
Security guard would later back this up by saying that he was doing that so Guy 2 would go to jail. I challenged him saying he was putting people further in danger, chasing him around the store, and then challenging him to come BACK to the store. "I'm trained to see these things," he said, as he "schooled me" about how Guy 1 was a diversion (this is why he wasn't posted at the front - was following Guy 2 who was stealing stuff) and how I didn't see that plan unfolding (I did, but didn't make the connection till after it happened).
Anyway, I had a talk with the store supervisor. The manager wasn't there (Saturday at 1am?), but I'll have a talk with him sometime this week to let him know how I feel about how it was handled.
After the altercation went out the door, I poked my head out to see what the status of the sitch was . I figured the Guys were at least off the sidewalk for a second after running out so fast, so I didn't worry about them getting in my face. I decided, since the Guard was trying to bring them back, that I didn't want to be outside (stuck on the sidewalk by the store until I can get around the corner at least 100ft away), so I went back in the store and called 911. The checker seemed to think it was more funny than serious, but suggested that one of the female employees, till now busy replacing tags, should call 911 too (probably a policy about it or something and he thought he'd cover himself).
I was a good witness, and the cops showed up within a couple minutes on a "Caution" (what the 911op called it when she relayed it to the dispacher over the phone). The guys walked down the street together fairly non-chalantly after it was over at the store and the Guard was done cracking his stun gun at them. It did look, though, like Guy 2 was gonna come back to get physical with the Guard at one point. Anyway...
--Put yourself in my shoes. At the end of the checkstand. Verbal altercation behind you. Two guys approach you, bringing the situation right AT you. Your thoughts? What might you consider doing at this time?
--Assume you had a middle-aged man who was up to no good moments ago running straight at you. Would you even consider drawing your firearm? Could you justify a 190lb man running at you a serious threat? Assume you didn't have time to get out of the guy's way because there was a checkstand blocking your way and the only way to get out of his way is to go towards him then between checkstands or away from him towards the door (his path, dangerous).
March 16th, 2009 02:01 AM
what Safeway was this at??? I think you did the safest thing for yourself....
March 16th, 2009 02:21 AM
50th St and Brooklyn Ave NE
Seattle, WA 98105
Yeah but what if I had been armed. What might/should I have done?
Originally Posted by IssaquahWA19
I want to know what people would do while carrying.
March 16th, 2009 02:27 AM
Armed or not doesn't have anything to do with it unless your life or someone elses's is in immediate and grave danger.
Were you or was somebody else in immediate and grave danger?
I will support gun control when you can guarantee all guns are removed from this planet. That includes military and law enforcement. When you can accomplish that, then I will be the last person to lay down my gun. Then I will carry the weapon that replaces the gun.
March 16th, 2009 02:41 AM
I'm wondering if someone thought that a large man charging in your direction was a serious enough threat. How do I know what he's gonna do to me?
Not that I think I would have handled it any differently. Just want other opinions.
March 16th, 2009 03:07 AM
Agreed. Guy 2 did not threaten you even though it's disconcerting having a guy up to no good running right at/past you.
Originally Posted by SonofASniper
Did you give your change to Guy 3 outside the door?
March 16th, 2009 06:37 AM
You did the correct thing by JUST being a good witness...you didn't see any weapons...you didn't get involved...
The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.
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March 16th, 2009 08:58 AM
I agree +1
Originally Posted by retsupt99
March 16th, 2009 09:26 AM
Originally Posted by retsupt99
((Place funny, whitty comment here))
March 16th, 2009 09:51 AM
I wouldnt have called 911. If the store wanted to report the incident, they would have done so.
March 16th, 2009 10:00 AM
Try to get out of the store and call 911 ASAP, after that either be a good witness or leave all together.
For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the son of man be. Mathew 24:27
March 16th, 2009 10:37 AM
safeway is not so safe huh?
March 16th, 2009 12:04 PM
Why would you want to intervene in a situation like this in the first place? No weapon was present, you were not a target. Why is it that people feel they need to get involved in every little incident and have to draw a firearm. The idea of having a firearm is to prevent deadly physical force upon yourself or another. It amazes me on how some people who see a threat wants to justify pulling a weapon and intervening, even if they are not directly involved. If you are not a cop don't act like one.
Originally Posted by FreeDelivery
One more step and it's on!
March 16th, 2009 12:06 PM
I would try to get as far out of the way as possible. So on that point you did OK. As to drawing a weapon, or trying to stop him from fleeing. Nope, he wasn't presenting a threat to you and the store has insurance to cover thefts.
As to the security guard, well the man is an idiot! Screaming, trying to intimidate and trying to call the guy back to the store. Just plain stupid. Wonder if he thinks his stun gun is going to stop a bullet? Made me wonder if his name is Gecko45!
March 16th, 2009 12:30 PM
The most I would've done is to be a good witness.
I'm not responsible for Safeway's money or merchandise, so I am not getting involved beyond observing and reporting. As far as drawing your gun, if you like to spend "quality" time with people of a criminal nature in close confinement, go ahead.
Like someone else already mentioned, did you see the third guy? You already admit to not seeing the second one. My advice is to be a good witness and if it doesn't directly concern you, don't stick your nose where it doesn't belong.
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