Am I Being Too Paranoid?

This is a discussion on Am I Being Too Paranoid? within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Over the weekend I experienced a non-emergency incident at my home, and in hindsight I’m wondering if my response was over-the-top… opinions on what you ...

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Thread: Am I Being Too Paranoid?

  1. #1
    Member Array Guvn3r's Avatar
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    Am I Being Too Paranoid?

    Over the weekend I experienced a non-emergency incident at my home, and in hindsight I’m wondering if my response was over-the-top… opinions on what you would have done:

    We live in a rather nice middle-class neighborhood on the north side of High Point, NC. Crime seems pretty low within the 5 mile radius of my street, a few car burglaries here and there on the public HPPD blotter, but nothing too serious.
    About 6:15 PM Saturday the doorbell rings. My wife grabs the smaller child and says my name to make sure I’ve heard the doorbell (I tend to get immersed on the computer sometimes). I said “Yep” and then immediately grab the loaded SP101 (our “downstairs weapon”) and walk to the front door, revolver behind my right hip out of sight. I see an individual thru the side window, and open the door about 4” with my foot bracing it.

    The guy, stocky about 50lbs heavier than me, with a name tag identifying himself as a representative of some regional rehab halfway-house, starts his rehearsed opening pitch for donations. He asks how I’m doing and I say “fine, what do you need?”. He introduces himself, asks my name and sticks out his hand to greet me. I say “Sir, I do not wish to shake your hand right now.” (for obvious reasons). He asks ‘well do you want to hear what the charity/rehab place is about?’ and I say I will call them if I need information or wish to donate. He says “Well, I will be the one answering the phone if you call.” As he is stalling I look across the street over his shoulder and see a dude who I swear looks like Suge Knight, talking to the old guy who lives there. I’m remembering a technique used recently for B&E in the area, where they go door-to-door and scope out the best targets before returning later for the loot. I realize my large flatscreen TV is within earshot of the front door, so I then tell my guy that I am not interested in talking to him further and please have a good evening. I then close & lock the door and watch him leave my property, muttering to himself. He says something to Suge Knight, then I pick up my cellphone and hit the speed dial (thanks to a tip from DC forums) for the local PD desk sergeant. Reported the two guys, gave a location and detailed description, and said it might be nothing but could they please send a squad car to check things out. She said they would and so I hung up, put the revolver back in it’s home, and continued to scan windows until it got too dark to see.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~

    These two guys may have been legit and simply looking for charity donations, but my feeling is that in 2009, that’s a very out-dated fundraising model and presents a multitude of problems, both for the knocker and for the private citizen. I am concerned that people like my elderly neighbor would open themselves up for theft, or worse, by trusting door-to-door types. Am I too paranoid, PTSD, or whatever? Did I overreact? Also, did I waste the LEO's time on a "goosechase" or a non-event?
    "...for all who draw the sword will die by the sword." Matthew 26:52

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array mercop's Avatar
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    Sounds like an appropriate response to me. If you had acted like most would and he came back for a home invasion or burglary you would be posting a different story, one I would not want to hear. Can't think of anything I would have done differently. Time for a no soliciting sign.- George

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    Member Array Loadedtech's Avatar
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    In this day and age, I would say you didnt over react to what could have been 2 BG's staking out houses. It not uncommon here, I have a neighbor that goes around door to door selling for a roof/siding company. So when someone comes to the door with a big book of product, I wouldnt think its a BG. But, do the same as you, answer the door ready for anything. It would be a disgrace for a BG to act as a charity/rehab employee, but definately could happen.
    CHP holder. EDC G27. I support VCDL, so glad to have them fighting for my rights.

  5. #4
    VIP Member Array David in FL's Avatar
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    3 words for you......

    Guard-gated community!
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat."

    Theodore Roosevelt

  6. #5
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    Array SIXTO's Avatar
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    Not paranoid. The only thing I would have done different is got the name of the joint they represented and call to complain.

    Why these places try to sell their crap and get donations this way I'll never understand. So many send their reps out looking like circus clowns of the hood. Who would buy anything or give anything to them?
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    VIP Member Array AllAmerican's Avatar
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    I agree with the no soliciting sign. Yes, the door to door thing is outdated. These days they stand at 4 way stops to guilt you into giving.
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  8. #7
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    I would not have opened the door, to answer it.
    Unexpected people are not afforded the same cordiality as are my expected guests. I too live in a nice neighborhood on a quiet block.

    I would have looked out the side window first to look for cars and others (my norm anyway) followed by checking the peep hole (you do have one, right?) or looking out to their faces and head through the transom window above the door at my own house.
    Next I would _without_ opening the door ask "Who is it?". If I do not recognize the voice or the name or the company (Fedex, UPS, etc) then my door remains closed and locked. My foot or toe(s) is not going to get broken by some guy built like a human battering ram...or myself overrun through the door opening by multiple persons. These both occur and with regularity.

    For sales people with come ons I say politely "Thank you for the offer but I am going to pass. Have a good day!".
    And I leave it at that with no further discussion...even as I will stand behind my door to observe and make sure they have moseyed on.

    I am not and do not feel oblidged to open my door to anyone nor am I oblidged to have a conversation with anyone showing them my face. They can speak to me through the door and if that's not good enough for them then well they better have a badge and a marked vehicle with flashing lights.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

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    Senior Member Array Beans's Avatar
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    Guard-gated community!
    A false sense of security. In my 26 years as a state investigator I found gated communties more of a nuisance then a hindrance. Someone* is always going into these areas and you just follow them through the gate. I did this 3-4 times a day.

    * delivery trucks, repair trucks, contractors on and on and on,

    However if you have a physical guard on the gate it changes things

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    Senior Member Array David III's Avatar
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    I agree with Janq (as usual). Just don't open the door at all. It's pretty easy to look out of some vantage point and see whether it's UPS with the big brown truck. Anyone coming to my house other than delivery people should have called me first.
    Can't see who is at the door? Get a cheap camera and a monitor. Beats getting dead. Yes, I have been accused of being paranoid. Fine. I'm still here.

  11. #10
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    Array buckeye .45's Avatar
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    Sounds reasonable to me. If I want to donate for a charity, I'll search them out. One house I used to live in had an intercom system for the door, actually a pretty good thing for un-invited visitors, as there where control panels in several rooms of the house.
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  12. #11
    VIP Member Array grady's Avatar
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    No, you didn't overreact. Good job on being armed when you opened the door.

    +1 on not opening the door.
    +1 on the "No Solicitors" sign. I installed my sign recently.
    +1 on the intercom. I had my intercom installed recently.

  13. #12
    Member Array Olsen's Avatar
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    There is no such things as overreacting. The day you let your guard down, is the day you might regret it..As for my self, as many have said, I do not open my door for strangers..Most people in my circle call before showing up.
    IDPA, USPSA, NRA & USCCA!

  14. #13
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    Door to door has been abused to the point that I will no longer do any business with anyone nor even waste my time talking to them. (Except for the school kids)

    I think you did just fine!
    ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!

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    No. You didn't over react.

    "He introduces himself, asks my name and sticks out his hand to greet me."

    I have foolishly fallen for that line, all worked out, but might not have.

    I'm convinced these folks aren't selling stuff but casing the neighborhood. They want to see who opens the door, who looks like they won't resist or fight back, who is home at certain times of the day, who not.

  16. #15
    Senior Member Array dunndw's Avatar
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    You did fine. Paranoid is when there's a schwans truck on your street all day...street isn't that long, perhaps only 35 houses. When you drive up 3 guys stop in the middle of the street and just stare at you..so you go inside and ready the AR with a mag full of TAPs and a 37mm CS round...just in case.

    I had my AMEX jacked and now my home address and mobile phone number is being used by all sorts of people, I don't take that lightly.
    "If I was an extremist, our founding fathers would all be extremists," he said. "Without them, we wouldn't have our independence. We'd be a disarmed British system of feudal subjectivity."

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