View Full Version : My neighborhood isn't as good as I thought it was
June 19, 2006, 11:34 PM
Moved here last year and thought it was a decent neighborhood. I was wrong.
So far, someone has attempted to break into our truck (Not worth anything, nothing of value in it), someone had stole our bricks to lift up a car in the area to steal their rims(got the bricks back), and I myself have now had 3 altercations. Two of which, were tonight.
I jog at the school track 5 days a week around 9-10 PM. I haven't had any problems for the past few months. Tonight, there was a large amount of Hispanics around the area. Most of which had left before I got started on my workout. As I'm walking my second time around the track, a guy is walking the same way as me. I then get to the end of the track and have two teens start cursing me out because I didn't have any cigarettes. Wasn't sure if they were going to do anything, and luckily they just walked on. As I turn my head from them, I see the same guy now walking towards me. I walk past him and hear him mumbling something and signaling me to come to him. At that point I pulled my small knife out and walked off the track towards the parking lot. Turn around and see him running towards me. I stand my ground and ask him what he wants, and all I could make out is "telephone" and "you took my telephone", (He didn't speak English very well). He keeps looking at my hand and at that time I have the police on the dial pad of my phone, getting ready to call, and my knife in the other. He then puts his hand in his pocket, and that's when I put the blade out to my side. He pulls out a shiny object. I start backing off, telling him I have the police on the phone. He backs off and goes to his car digging in his back seat (Made me even more uncomfortable). At that point, I'm making my way back to my house, and see him leave.
After my first encounter late last year, I had purchased an X26 taser to bring with me while I ride. I'm only 16, so I obviously can't carry a weapon.
When I started jogging, I stopped carrying the taser because it was in the way. I also don't know if a minor is entitled to carry a taser.
So now I'm left trying to figure out what to do. Get a treadmill and be unable to go outside at night in MY neighborhood?
Tonight, I found myself in a venerable situation. I had my hands full with my water, phone, and knife. Unsure of which to use, and wishing I had carried my taser.
June 20, 2006, 12:27 AM
You can get a fanny pack or load bearing vest that will accomodate your phone, water, and knife, and may provide the ability to carry a taser as well. Consider running with a stout cane. Consider running with a Large Dog. Run with companions. Look for a Progressive Fighting Systems class in your area or a Krav Maga school. Either of these styles are far more aggressive and require less time to become proficient in than the highly stylized traditional martial arts.
Finding out your neighborhood is not what you thought it was is certainly disheartening. To borrow a phrase from the late John Wayne, 'Don't let the bastards get you down!'
June 20, 2006, 12:30 AM
I don't know if any material preparations will give you the peace of mind necessary to make your new 'hood a livable situation.
Sorry I can't bring more to the discussion; get out if you can.
June 20, 2006, 12:39 AM
Used to live in a bad neighborhood near DC, so i feel your pain. Your best bet in any situation is to 1. always be aware of everyone. 2. Never make yourself a target, carrying money or expensive electronics around attracts attention from bad people. 3. Dont show fear. This is important, if you look like a scared person, theyll be on you like a pack of dogs on a three legged cat. Dont live your life by the rules of a bunch of degenerates out to rob and steal from the weak. But back to my first statement.....I USED to live in a bad 'hood. Eventually i moved, I didnt move from fear but in the end who wants to live everyday in an environment like that, if you have the means to leave? I had the means, and i left. Good luck, I know a gun is out, but a folding knife or small baton is a perfect SD weapon, and you wont catch much grief from a cop if you used it to save your life.
June 20, 2006, 12:40 AM
June 20, 2006, 12:43 AM
I have a bluetooth compatible phone that allows me to voice dial. I have "Emergency" set up as one of my contacts. All I do is touch a button on the side of the headset or the phone and I can do the rest with my voice.
My water resides in a camelback on my back.
My knife is in my left pocket along with my flashlight after dark.
I carry all these while mountain biking near my home with no problem and am able to use the bluetooth while there is a decent amount of ambient noise (i.e. in a noisy room).
I agree it is your neighborhood and you should not be restricted in your activities there.
the single best thing would be to take someone else or a dog while you work out.
June 20, 2006, 01:31 AM
I still can't think of what he wanted. I had started to think he was trying to steal my phone. Though he kept staring at my hand that I had my knife in.
I ended up dropping my water and prepare for him to make a move, because while he was charging towards me all I could think he was going to do was jump me. If I had my taser, I would have drawn and pointed. He would have gave me every reason to.
There was actually a cop that drove through the school parking lot minutes before. I was hoping he'd drive down the main street again so I could flag him down.
I do know the basic laws on the TASER, but I do not know if age restrictions apply with carrying. And at this point, I could really care less. I do need to find a way of carrying it, even if I have ot use the outdated "fanny pack".:o
June 20, 2006, 06:55 AM
If you were in Georgia you committed a felony by having a knife of any kind on school property. The Taser would be a felony on any school property as well... You would be arrested and banned from school from then on. HUGE no no to have any sort of weapon on school campus/grounds here... You need to check your local laws before you carry any sort of weapon back to the track. Just FYI...
June 20, 2006, 07:18 AM
Yes, I do understand that. The track belongs to the appartments next door. I just consider it to be apart of the school grounds because it is inbetween. And btw, the school isn't a public school, it's a small learning center.
June 20, 2006, 07:21 AM
I wasn't saying you were in the wrong where you were. Just saying it's a good idea to check local laws. You may even have laws regarding carrying deadly weapons in certain public places/areas besides schools. All the advice here won't do you any good when you end up in court for violating a local law or ordinance. None of the folks here saying arm yourself and fight back are going to show up at your trial. ;)
June 20, 2006, 08:08 AM
I'd reccomend you jog earlier, perhaps in another location. In my experience, most urban teenagers are mouthy, that alone dosen't make them a threat. I hear F the police, more often than have a nice day. Showing a weapon, especially a knife, to a potential threat is not a great idea IMHO. The threat knows thats what you've got, and if he'd had a 380 or 25 on him, or in the car, you have problems. I'd like the element of suprise, if the threat escalates. +1 to weapons on school property, the media will crucify you in the event of an incident. My 0.02. Regards 18DAI.
June 20, 2006, 08:31 AM
Imagine the story they had to tell about the crazy guy walking around with the knife in his hand. Imagine the police on patrol who see a kid walking around a public track carrying a knife in his hand, that just may not be the smart thing to do. You have to consider in life how you are percieved by others too, because you can't understand what others are doing or saying doesn't give you the right to take aggressive action. You were lucky that night, a hostile group of friends may have jump the "stranger" (to them) with the knife and "protected" themselves, all a matter of perception. Be careful, be smarter.
June 20, 2006, 09:53 AM
OC really isn't a bad idea. I don't believe there are age restrictions on the tasers yet? Doesn't seem like there are very many laws on the books about them. Honestly, though - if it were me and I already had the taser, I would either carry it or find somewhere else to jog. If someone intends to do me bodily harm and the taser is what saves me, it would be worth it.
I would rather be on probation than life support, but that's just me.
June 20, 2006, 10:33 AM
In the school where I train, we say that this type of situation must be handled with "T.L.C." That's a Total Lifestyle Change. The situation you have described is not a single, identifiable, dangerous threat. You have described a fully-encompaning dangerous environment. This is a problem that cannot be solved simply by carrying a Taser. (Side note: I don't like Tasers. They are hard to use, and if you miss, then you've allowed the attacker to get close enough that you're now in trouble... Sprays are better. Big freakin' sticks are even better than sprays, but only if you know what you're doing.)
You need a Total Lifestyle Change. You need to change the way you think about yourself, your surroundings, and your interactions in your surroundings.
First and foremost, I'm going to guess that this altercation happened in the evening? Don't go out when they are out. Don't place yourself in bad situations like that. Jog in the mornings. Thugs hate the mornings. (Around 7:00 a.m., they'll all be sleeping off the hangovers.)
Second, after you have removed yourself from the portion of the threat you can identify, train, train, train! Get into a martial arts program (empty-hand or other), and learn some awareness and evasion skills. Learn to identify threat, anticipate an escalating situation, and take reasonable steps to avoid the situation. I'm proud to say that I've never been in an altercation. I've had to take the long way home a few times, but I've never gotten close enough to a threat to allow a situation to escalate (knock on wood!). These are things that I can't teach over the internet. You need personal instruction.
As mentioned earlier, a portion of evasion is personal projection. You need to learn to project confidence, give the appearance of strength and lack of vulnerability. But, this is only a very minor portion of threat evasion.
You must accept the reality of your situation. You're 16, so you can't just up-and-move. You have to go to school sometime, so you can't carry your concealed bazooka all the time. You need to make some serious personal adaptations to your changed environment. Miamoto Musashi always encouraged his students to be adaptable to any situation. This has the potential to be a very positive trial-by-fire for you.
Concerning the property theft: Fences. Think Fences, Walls, Force-fields, etc... Just make it a little harder for them to steal it, and they may move on to the next guy's house. Remember, they're not looking for the best car in the neighborhood. They're looking for the easiest car in the neighborhood.
I hope this helps. You're in a bad situation, and I do not envy you for the changes you will have to make.
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