Crime in libraries
ORIGINAL AIRDATE: 2/28/2007
You go to a library to read, do research or study quietly. What you
don't expect, are serious crimes.
When police responded to an emergency call from a library in Des
Moines, Iowa they found James Effler, a registered sex offender,
barricaded in the library bathroom with a 20-month-old toddler. He
is now serving life without parole for kidnapping and sexual assault.
But this is not an isolated case. INSIDE EDITION found that crimes in
libraries occur more often than you may think.
In Ohio last year, a surveillance camera captured a man who was
dressed as a woman committing a lewd act right in the middle of the
library. He pleaded no contest.
In a Denver library, a man was seen stumbling after being brutally
stabbed in the neck by an out of control drifter who was loitering in
Casey Carr knows how dangerous libraries can be. In December of
2001, when Casey was 11, he went to a library in Sacramento, Calif.
after school to do homework. But Casey said 25-year-old Lloyd Dawkins
kept bothering him.
When Casey went to the bathroom, Dawkins followed him, forced him
into a bathroom stall and assaulted him. Dawkins is now serving 16
years in prison.
So how bad is library crime? INSIDE EDITION examined over 2000
library incident reports from 13 cities around the country in 2005.
In Atlanta, there were 174 reports of theft, disruptive behavior and
harassment. In Seattle, there were 45 reports of public intoxication
and sexual misconduct, and in Cleveland there were 48 incidents of
vandalism, theft and threats.
Libraries are now investing in sophisticated security equipment, such
as surveillance cameras.
In Riverhead, New York, cameras taped a man stalking 85-year-old Ruth
Seybolt who was visiting the library like she had done for more than
20 years. He can be seen watching her movements, and then following
her into an aisle where he brutally attacked her and stole her
Seybolt was found unconscious on the floor and authorities initially
thought she had simply fallen down. But her grandson, Robert Fox,
who is a police officer, didn't believe it and insisted on seeing the
Three months later Ruth Seybolt died from her injuries. Garner Allen,
a previously convicted violent felon, was found guilty of her murder
and sentenced to life behind bars.
Fox says no one should assume they are safe just because they are in
a quiet place like a library. "Anything can happen anywhere," he
said. "There are bad guys everywhere."
The president of the American Library Association told INSIDE EDITION
that libraries are very safe, but cautions that they are open to
everyone. Parents should accompany young children and establish
rules and expectations for older children.
Yes indeed - nowhere can be assumed safe - library, church - anywhere.
It is a sad fact that these days folks should be alert whatever their surroundings, simply because the unexpected can happen.
I got hit over the head and knocked unconscious with a very heavy book in our local library.
The book was titled:
Crime And Understanding The Criminal Mind.
There are some simple, unavoidable principles in operation when it comes to crime:
- Reduced ability to defend one's self lowers the risk to a criminal.
- Fewer people around to hear/see a crime results in lower risk for a criminal.
- Advertisement of an area as weapons-free doesn't actually disarm criminals of their weapons. Worse, it advertises to criminals that such an area is highly likely to be full of people who are otherwise disarmed. In short, it creates a weapons-free, free-fire zone for criminals. Sort of like having a minefield without any mines, while advertising it's mine-free. A fairly pointless exercise, all around.
- Delays to be anticipated, if disarmed:
- Await arriving police after calling them on the phone: 1min to whenever, depending on urgency and location.
- Outrun the criminal to the nearest locked, defensible area: 1min or more, if you can find one.
- Hope the pixie dust is working, today: a long, long wait.
- Pray that the higher power plans days around your dilemmas and will actually intervene this time: for the rest of your natural life ... which might not be that long, actually, in the face of a violent attack.
Nice to know the libraries are considering investing in video cameras. They can get the attacks and violations on film (with guaranteed full-frontal mugshots of all criminals, of course). In a large area where people simply refuse to take personal responsibility over their own security and well-being, I suppose that's the most that can be expected. Heck, it's a shot in the dark.
im pretty sure most CCW-issue states have no problem with licensee's carrying in public library's, barring school library's of course
What the original poster was referring to was an effort by Newport News, VA to outlaw guns in public libraries.
Originally Posted by briansmech
i think kansas tried, maybe they actually did, outlaw guns in library's, regardless of carry status
Seriously paramedic...interesting thread and not something that I was aware of.
No carry in Kansas public libraries. I figured it was because shooting would disrupt the silence.
That's a 10-4 in Kansas. Seems stupid but that is the law for now. Steve48
Originally Posted by Steve48
am i wrong in thinking that considering CCW is new in Kansas (IIRC), that it could be worse?
A local library near me last fall took an official position that it's grounds are not allowable toward knives and otherwise weapons of any sort.
They did this upon request of patrons being flipped out by sighting persons (students) walking through with folding/utility knives clipped inside their pockets or attached to backpacks.
I might forward this item to them as an FYI.
P.S. - For those who need it the original URL for this story is; http://www.insideedition.com/ourstor...px?storyid=540
not legal in Ohio either....
public monies involved or some such excuse :blink:
Silly rules. They should have to justify why they exclude certain areas from CC. Doesn't make sense to exclude something like a library or other very open, public place. Makes me happy to live in Washington. Despite our liberal leanings in state/national votes, very few places are illegal to carry.
Exactly. I sent a copy of this to the City Council and Library Board of Trustees. Of course their bill got shot down, hopefully it won't come back next year. Gun rights used to be on a roll here in VA, but the last couple of years have been give and take, with little true advance.
Originally Posted by p8riot