Bad: Be careful snow shoveling

Bad: Be careful snow shoveling

This is a discussion on Bad: Be careful snow shoveling within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; BILL VOGRIN THE GAZETTE Joe Widhalm's effort to shovel the snow from his Broadmoor-area home ended up in a chilling confrontation with a masked gunman ...

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Thread: Bad: Be careful snow shoveling

  1. #1
    Member Array Napolean's Avatar
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    Sep 2008

    Bad: Be careful snow shoveling

    Joe Widhalm's effort to shovel the snow from his Broadmoor-area home ended up in a chilling confrontation with a masked gunman desperate for cash.

    Before he could clear his sidewalk about 6 p.m. Sunday on Farthing Drive, Widhalm was kidnapped by a man who first forced him to bind his wife, Marguerite, with duct tape, then drive to an ATM to drain his bank accounts.

    "I was shoveling my walk when a car drove up and stopped next door," Widhalm said Monday. "I wasn't paying much attention. A man got out and the car drove off."
    The man soon had Widhalm's attention.

    "He walked up to me and was wearing a mask and pointing a gun at me," said Widhalm, a retired Air Force colonel. "He starts trying to find out what I have on my person - cash and ATM cards. And he wanted to know about my ability to get money."

    Widhalm described his attacker as "calm, cool and collected" and said he never raised his voice during the hourlong ordeal.

    "He tried to be somewhat firm, making sure we weren't trying to lie to him," Widhalm said. "But he was trying to assure us nothing would happen as long as we did what he said."

    Widhalm did not have his wallet, so he was forced to go inside his home with the gunman to get it.

    "He was concerned about who was in the house," Widhalm said. "I had to assure him it was just my wife. No kids. No pets.

    "I was trying to remain calm and not allow the situation to get out of control."

    Still, he was worried about how his wife would react.

    "She remained pretty calm," he said. "She realized it was serious."

    The gunman ordered Widhalm to take his wife's ATM and driver's license and bind her with tape to prevent her from calling police before they left to find an ATM.

    "He was in the back seat of the car and I drove," Widhalm said.

    They went down to two area shopping centers along Highway 115 looking for drive-through ATMs. They found one on Cheyenne Meadows Road and proceeded to withdraw the maximum from Widhalm's account.

    "He wanted to keep using the card and PIN number to access different accounts," Widhalm said.

    "But the system locked up. It froze my accounts and wouldn't let any more money out."

    When they were unable to get any more cash, the gunman ordered Widhalm to take him to a rendezvous point where he met his accomplice and drove off.

    By the time Widhalm reached a gas station to call police, his wife had freed herself and alerted authorities to the kidnapping.

    Though upset by the incident, Widhalm said it could have been worse.

    "It was just a random act," he said. "If I hadn't been out there, they'd have driven up the street and targeted somebody else."

    He said the couple escaped mostly unharmed, other than the problems the attack created with his bank accounts.

    "Physically, we are just trying to recover," he said. "We didn't sleep very well last night."

    While he does not intend to overreact to the incident, Widhalm said there is one change he intends to make.

    "I don't think I'll be out there by myself shoveling in the dark anymore," he said.

    Colorado Springs police have made no arrests.
    Right across the street from a kids park and firestation.

  2. #2
    Member Array sharpetop's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    The Broadmoor area was a pretty well to do area back when I lived along the front range. Any time, any where, even while doing chores around the homestead.

  3. #3
    Senior Moderator
    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Central Florida
    The criminals grow bolder every day...and there is not guarantee that you'll be left as a witness.
    This guy became a victim because he was in 'condition white'.
    I notice every car that goes up and down the street.
    I notice every car in the parking lots we park fact, I usually make a drive around a few rows to scope out the local cliental prior to picking a parking spot.

    Stay armed...know who's around you...stay safe!
    Proverbs 27:12 says: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.”

    Certified Glock Armorer
    NRA Life Member

  4. #4
    Senior Moderator
    Array gasmitty's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
    Gilbert, AZ
    I don't even pull weeds out of my front lawn without a gun in my pocket these days (no, it doesn't make the weed-pulling any easier, just safer).

  5. #5
    Member Array .45forme's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    To close to home. So I guess I have to pack, just to shovel snow. Im sure copy cats are to follow. Hey if it worked once. And of course the news has told ALL the B/Gs how its done.

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array aus71383's Avatar
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    Jan 2007
    I was out shoveling snow tonight - I would have sooner used the shovel than try to draw my gun. Certainly a weapon of opportunity IMO.


  7. #7
    Lead Moderator
    Array HotGuns's Avatar
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    Dec 2004
    Its only going to get worse, as the economy falters, and as people lose their jobs, some will get desperate enough to step over the line.
    Universal Background Checks...the next step towards registration and confiscation.

    AR. CHL Instr. 07/02 FFL
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