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Heard from a web aquaintance over in Casper WY - within his chatty email was reference to an encounter where he was approached by a (seemingly) classic panhandler. Grubbing for a dollar etc.

This one tho managed to get close and produced a small piece - with with he threatened this guy - to produce more than just a buck. Glad to say he was ''dealt with'' by means of what sounded to me like kick boxing but not sure, details sketchy. AFAIK the guy carries but made no mention of its use ... (can you CCW in WY? - I am not even sure).

What it told me tho is that this could be a potentially great way for a true BG to get close - or try. Most of time panhandlers are just a PITA - fact of life - tho we avoid them if poss'. Guess it reinforces my thinking re - trust no one and keep distance etc. Anyone approaching with apparent purpose - we need to back off or control the situation - verbally at first of course but going from a yellow to orange for sure.

What are your experiences with panhandlers?
 

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Had a few approach me, but they backed off as I told em to get lost.
 

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You can carry in WY. You can open carry in WY. :)

I get panhandlers and 'just off the tracks' regularly - the main rail depot for the entire Pacific NW is < 50 yards from the shop.

It's one of the reasons when I leave for the night if I'm closing by myself I open carry. I want that gun and now, and the presence of the average panhandler as I walk towards my car when I'm already jumpy don't help.

The present gun routine your friend mentioned I've seen before, but not around here. I hope he filed a police report.
 

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Ya Gotta Any Money?

Would have been a rather ambiguous statement by the little weasel that asked only he had a little kitchen knife in his hand a BIG weasel that was doing a poor job of sneaking up behind me had a broken aluminum bat. I was trying to thumb a ride out of Salina Utah. They beat a hasty retreat yelling 'It's cool" It's Cool!" over their shoulders as they ran. I had a little chopped and bobbed Police Positive in my jacket pocket and it was out and back in a flash.
This was years before permits in Utah or AZ, but I flat out didn't care, I was 17 and wanted to travel.
Later that summer a couple drunk Indians tried to roll me outside of gas station in Flagstaff, but they must have studied the same manual as the other two guys as they said It’s cool, It’s cool," while shuffling backwards. I had a 4" heavy barrel Model 10 on that trip. I stopped hitch hiking after one more trip-it was uneventful.
Yeah, I would say panhandling is used as an opener for mugging.
I really enjoyed the thread about keep your distance, and Phil's website regarding the same thing.
If only I knew then, what I know now.
Rob
 

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When approached by panhandlers I'm always in condition orange. For one of them to try something like this on me the score would be Christians 1, Lions 0. When approched by them, I'm polite and firm, then I exit the area.
 

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It seems my alert level goes up when anyone approaches me or mine...just the way it is anymore. I try to be polite, if possible, but let them know firmly that I'm not interested and keep moving. If they happen to ask where the local shelter is, I'll quickly give them the location, being all the more wary during that conversation.
 

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Phil,

Thank you for the links, very informative. In Eugene we are getting an insurgence of street people as the meth problem becomes worse and worse.

Wayne
 

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I've been known to try to witness the gospel to panhandlers that approach me. Maybe not such a great idea but I try to assess the area first.

Usually they boogie pretty quick when I ask them if they've gone to a Church yet for help.
 

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My son, a student in Boston without a handgun, starts talking to them very loudly in German. If they don't back off fast, he starts yelling really profane nasty stuff, again, in German. Usually scares the snot out of them. He would never let them "close the distance".
 

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I haven't had any problems with panhandlers around here. They usually ask on approach and leave quietly, and if I'm out with Mrshonts, they won't bother me - they'll ask him.

When they approach, I shake my head and they walk off. Most are actually very polite. Very rarely have I had any who were annoying and required stern looks and evasive action. There was only one who caused any alarm, and that was years ago during a photo shoot we had downtown when we had several models and lots of camera equipment. The beggar kept hanging around and bothering us, so I kept my eye on him, making sure he wouldn't "handle" the models or run off with the camera equipment.

I had one a while back that was "honest" - he asked for some unusual amount of change, just enough for what he wanted to buy, "I'll be honest, I'm not going to buy food. I'm gettin' me a drink." :biggrin2: He didn't get any change from me, and politely left.

A whole army of panhandlers collected around the war museum when we went there close to Memorial Day; I guess they figured they'd get more sympathetic handouts. They didn't approach anybody, but sat around in the shade.
 

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Betty,

I've never seen so many street people in my life than the few times we visited Nashville. Must be the climate.

BTW, nice city you have there, I love Nashville.
 

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There seem to be several varieties here in sout hFlorida. Some are organized as part of a large "ring." They're the legless wonders who wind up in the middle of major intersections all day long begging but who never have any indicator of how they got there. (I'm guessing dropped off pre-dawn by the "boss)

Then there are the folks who pretend to work....the window washers who approach your car and wash first, ask for payment after. Some of these are also smash and grab artists to the unwary person driving the high end car. Miami has an amazingly large number of Ferrari owners.

Then there are the truly homeless and indigent who usually panhandle for food. Some of these are harmless, but some are suffering from a variety of mental disorders that can make them volatile, even dangerous. Lot of vets in this group. Nearly all have some sort of edged weapon on them to protect them from the predators in their jungle, not necessarily as a weapon to be used against you....but still....I always watch them and when anyone of them approaches I move into ORANGE as a matter of course.
 

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Having lived in NYC and visited a number of large urban centers, I've had my fair share of panhandlers.

One of the "funniest" situations I had with the "downtrodden" included waiting at a red light in NYC in my minivan as a squeegee guy (this was before Guiliani's infamous "war" on squeegee people and other quality-of-life violators got into full swing). Now this guy was a young (early to mid 20's) black man who was ripped with a capital "R." He looked to have regularly lifted Staten Island as part of his workout regimen. Well, he approached my car, squeegee and water bottle in hands, I gave him a stern look while nodding no. His reaction? He popped to attention and rendered the best military salute I've ever received in my 16+ years of military service. I returned his salute and he moved on. He must had been in the military and saw my blue military gate pass (issued to officers).
 

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I was in a conference in Denver a few years back and a panhandler approached me with a whole song and dance about a baby in a car that needed medicene and he just needed a few dollars for gas because the car ran out on the highway. I pointed out the Highway Patrol would tow his car and get his child to the hospital, let's flag down a cop - he took off. The funny thing was he tried the exact same bit on me the next night! I told him to go find someone new to try that on.
 

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I worked in downtown Washington DC for awhile and would carry a couple coupons for a McDonalds sandwich. If a pan handler/street person would approach I would get out the coupon and offer it up. If they took it that was fine. They probaby really were in need. If they refused, then they didn't need my help and I told them as much.

The McDs in Washington only let in people who buy food or have coupons for food. So the homeless who took my coupons would get to go inside for a bit, they would get a sandwich, and they could also get condiments. The condiments they could use to make soup later. So a coupon actually fed them more than once. A pastor I know told me about this and that pastor would also write the number for homeless services on a card to give them. I didn't go that far. I also carried the coupons in a certain pocket so that I would never take my eyes off the homeless person and so it would keep one hand totally free just in case.

I varied my route enough that I didn't have any regulars, but did have a few I would run into more than once. They do tend to be territorial in DC. So far Baltimore has the politest pan handlers I've encountered, but I haven't been to Nashville yet.

-Scott-
 

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Wayne:
It seems that anywhere along the I-5 corridor, meth and it's purveyors are a problem. Grants Pass is no exception. I'm a real estate appraiser, and in my travels I encounter many of these types at traffic lights, freeway off ramps. (Phil's photos must have been taken here. ) In one of our local parks the problem has escalated to the point that the elderly out for a stroll are often approached/accosted by two or three in a group. This is usually a summertime situation, as most of them beat feet south for the warmer climes. They are aggressive, verbally abusive, and very difficult to avoid. Some local "good ol' boys" were considering an evening trip through the park with ball bats to clean 'em out. We talked them out of that. Local LEO's have tried to clean up the situation, but the beggars are like cockroaches, turn on a light they scurry away. Light goes out, they're back. Local deputies used to drive these types to the county line and point them south (Calif) with the admonition to not return. Can't do that now. Not PC you know. Sign of the times I guess.
 
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