View Full Version : Almost Mugged ! ? ! ?

January 16, 2008, 04:04 AM
I live in new york city, and I was heading home on the subway at 3:00 in the morning.

I took at seat at one end of the subway car, and there was two other passengers, both appeared to be homeless types. one in the middle of the car, and one at the opposite end.

The train stopped at a station, and a black male enters, about 6' 160lbs, 20-25 years old, carrying a backpack with a pair of boxing gloves tied to the front, and a pair of boxing shoes tied to the back...

He got on the middle of the train and made eye contact with me and started to walk towards me.

I was a bit shocked when he walked all the way up to me and said,

"help me out, get me somethin to eat"...

at which point I shook my head...

He then said.. "comon, help me out"

At then I held up both palms and shook my head and said no.

He then gave me a look like as if he was getting angry and said "Yo..."

I could imagine the "yo" to be like yo, you better hand over the money, but he didnt quite say that..

I shook my head again and said no, and raised my palms..

he then said, help me out !


He reaches into his front jacket pocket a little bit..

then he takes his hand out of his pocket, steps back and turns away with a look of dissappointment, and hung his head...

I felt bad for him after that, I wondered how he has become to have to resort to this kind of behavior, he didnt appear high nor drunk..

I reached into my pants front pocket and pulled out one dollar bill.

and extended the black guy one dollar.

he took it from my hand,

I said to him "Good luck".. and he make a sound of some sort, like an acknowlegement.

the train pulled into the next station and he left the train,

I was indeed a bit shaken up..

Now that I am safely back in front of the computer. Thinking back, I wish I had one of my guns on me at the time.. When he reached into the pocket, I was thinking to myself, WHY IS THE GUN AT HOME ?

It's NYC here that's why, and only the rich and privilleged get to have carry permits here.

All in all, I am rather shaken up at this event, part of me is enraged even, thinking that who the hell does this guy think he is to hassle ME ? and other thoughts of the like.

Had I been armed, (illegal carry) would I have shot the perp ? maybe not, this guy was alone..

but had I been armed, and there was more than one, I think I would have shot them both, upon the guy reaching into his pocket..

Oh that would have been a really big mess to deal with, ..

well.. yeah, thanks for reading, I guess I just have to express myself to feel better, and at 4 in the morning, this is the only open ear !

thanks guys, happy shooting.

January 16, 2008, 05:29 AM
Sounds like a 7th grade writing attempt to me. I don't buy it...

January 16, 2008, 05:40 AM
"Sounds like a 7th grade writing attempt to me. I don't buy it..."

What makes it a 7th grade writing attempt ? I have to admit, My writing isnt great... I'm not a writer. but I assure you, this as you read it, is exactly what happened earier on the D train between Broadway LAfayette station and West 4th street station.

As much as I hate having to deal with low life scum like this, I know the city is full of these freakin no-goods. I once had one approach my car, once one approached me at a gas station when I was out of the car, once I had a chain snatched while on the subway.. one time one such person tried a similar thing at Madison square garden, alot of chest thumping trying to intimidate..

I think what this low life today did, Chest thumping intimidation to see if I was frightened enough to hand over the money.

I guess the earth will never be rid of low life scum like this, I'll just have to accept it as part of life in NYC...

January 16, 2008, 06:51 AM
A common lead-in to a mugging is "hey buddy, can you tell me the time?" Then they cold-clock you when you're distracted looking at your watch. It's also convenient for a mugger when your wallet is out of your pocket and extended towards him.

One response I've heard recommended is "GET THE HELL AWAY FROM ME!!!" at the top of your lungs.

Any large man, no matter what race, ought to know that even simple and sincere panhandling is very threatening behavior at 3am, regardless of the fact that it's against MTA rules.


And here's an incident in Vancouver where a panhandler dissatisfied with $5 throws an old man to the ground and takes his wallet:


Double Naught Spy
January 16, 2008, 07:59 AM
Almost mugged? I don't think so. You were panhandled, nothing more. You might have thought you were about to be mugged, but that does not make it an almost mugging.

January 16, 2008, 08:15 AM
I'm not completely sold here either, but then again, I've had strange things happen to me and had people question my story, so I'll play.
Boxing lessons aren't free, nor are the gloves and shoes. So he either has money or stole the items (in which case he's got a lot of nerve).
How long have you been in the city??? You kinda' set yourself up there. I'm more than a little nervous about your statement;
Had I been armed, (illegal carry) would I have shot the perp ? maybe not, this guy was alone..

but had I been armed, and there was more than one, I think I would have shot them both, upon the guy reaching into his pocket..
Now, you're in court, and the DA brings up the fact that you go online under the screen name ShootemDown, and show pictures of an aspiring young athlete shot down in his prime. The jury would already be tying a noose at this point.
You never saw what was in his pocket, so you're jumping from A to Z pretty quick here.
The vernacular of black youth can be hard to understand at times. As a teacher, I know a few of them. "YO" is as common as "HEY" white guy vernacular. It's not threatening by itself, and can even be a greeting. Scenarios are dynamic, so I can't say what the perfect solution would have been, but shooting them would mean "soap on a rope" is in order.

January 16, 2008, 09:05 AM
First off, the guy's not a "perp." He could be called a panhandler, but doesn't sound particularly aggressive for one of those. He didn't display a weapon, touch you or threaten you, and from your story he was going away before you gave him the dollar, anyway. Boxing gloves aside, the guy sounds a little pathetic.

Lighten up. Panhandlers are a fact of life in any medium to large city. Most of them are harmless, and realistically if dropping a buck on a guy keeps you from having to shoot him, it's a pretty good investment.

January 16, 2008, 09:33 AM
Being not much of a people person when I'm not at work, I hate dealing with panhandlers. Still, they're a fact of life so I've adopted a standard answer of, "Can't help you buddy", first with a smile, then firm if necessary.

Since most of these encounters occur inside the 7 yd./2 second draw window, I actually move closer to the panhandler to preclude them getting the drop on me with gun or knife.:eek:

I either pre-emptively know the time, or bring my watch to eye level to read it, while watching the threat--if I've deamed it a legitimate inquiry about the time of day. Otherwise, I've got no compunction about telling them "can't help you, buddy" while fully aware that they can see my fully functional watch.:D

I still get the adrenalin rush every time, no matter how many times it happens. I must not be good at poker, because many "honest" panhandlers--and perhaps some on-the-fence muggers--catch on that they're flirting with someone who's preparing to end them, and move along with no more hassle.

January 16, 2008, 09:45 AM
chadwimc - I dont think we need to correct someone's writing on this forum. Not everyone may be as skilled as you!

Shootemdown - You should review laws pertaining to self defense, because you had no actual imminent danger that would have justified a self defense shooting. You would definately be going to court and likely jail if you had been legal to carry and had shot that man. The act of reaching into one's pocket is scary, but in NYS state will not justify a self defense claim.

January 16, 2008, 09:56 AM
It's too bad that drugs and the welfare mentality gave panhandling a bad name. I don't give pandhandlers money anymore since the one time I seen a girl with a sign and gave her 15 bucks, (figured she might have a kid at home), only to see in my rearview as I drove away, a guy on a bike ride up to her and take it. I wanted so bad to turn around and go take it back. So no more cash now. Now when I see girls out PH'ing I look for the deadbeat man in the shadows and see him sometimes.

Sometimes I give them my bag lunch. I know they wont be buying booze or drugs with that!

One time I was out on an emergency no heat call at night and stopped at 7-11 for a coffee and was approached by a guy wanting money for a broken fan belt. Trying to get home he said but I seen no car. Still, something ringed true about it so being an HVAC guy I had an assortment of belts on the truck and went to the back and retrieved a few and gave him one of his choice. By the way he started hopping up n down I could see this was a good help. I like helping people if its good help and not a lie.

January 16, 2008, 10:21 AM
First off, I am a little confused about forum members responses to the OP.

The guy relates a story, and if you believe it or not is your business, but you are here to share knowledge, help, and inform other people who may not think as we do, not to instantly bash them into the ground, all but call them liars, and poke at their writing ability. Not very good ambassadors.....

And its perfectly reasonable that the OP felt scared or cornered when pressed in close by another guy on a train. And I don't think anyone here would have sat and calmly sipped their coffee while the guy reached into his pocket if you indeed felt threatened. Give people a break and help the guy like he asked, or you are no better than the other side.

(and I'm not addressing everyone who replied, you know who you are)

As to shootemdown, if you were willing, or think you would have pulled a gun, then you need to step back and think. 1st, according to your story, the guy had no visible weapon, 2nd, you stated the it is illegal for you to be carrying? If that is indeed the case, you set yourself up for big trouble here.

My advice, maybe if approached by someone like this in the future, stand up, be firm but polite, and tell them you don't have anything. Don't jump up quickly or get in their face, just stand so you are not at a disadvantage, and let them know you are aware. If the guy reaches in his pocket and you are truly worried that he has a weapon, then you have to act, not react. But for you a gun (unfortunately illegal for you) would not be the best option in this case.

January 16, 2008, 12:23 PM
low life scum like this

I sure hope you never fall on hard times........

Mugged? Sounds like he could have beaten you to a pulp......

Thanks for giving him a buck, least it was something.

Every person has value in my mind, no one is better than the other. Might be better off in life, but not better off where it counts.

Glad you didnt shoot him, you would be locked up without freedom. Jail sucks

January 16, 2008, 12:49 PM
There is panhandling, true. The Good ones will handle a rejection with a "God Bless You, you have a nice day" and a smile and move on. Aggressive panhandling ain't.

Use of force, or the threat of force to impose one's will and unlawfully obtain money or property is robbery to me. I have dealt with scores of panhandlers, bustlers, and muggers. Very different species.

The Bustler sings, plays music, dances, or performs to the public hoping to get some donations for their trouble. These are the least troublesome generally.

Panhandlers ask for money, sometimes they have a story line. The most successful ones I have enountered just ask with a smile. They won't lie about what they are going to do with the money sometimes. Sometimes they will.

Then you get into intimidation, which is right next to use of force. Seems to me the guy in the O.P. was trying to intimidate. Dont know too many pugilists who would press a stranger for a handout. IMO the gloves and shoes may have been part of the act.

Unless this poster just landed in NYC, they know the difference between panhandling and mugging. I have dealt with some panhandlers who can be very vicious characters - but you would never know it if you met them while they were working.

Trying to scare somebody into giving up money is robbery. The folks I worked out with would not carry their sparring gear openly. That is a newbie attention getting move.

Glenn E. Meyer
January 16, 2008, 01:04 PM
If the story is true:

Don't take the subway at 3:00 AM - no reason to - unless work related. :D

But, let me related a story about panhandling when I use to work in the city.

A poor soul without legs would push himself around on a little platform. He would play the Sax. He would come up to you, playing a bit and expecting you to give him a bit of change. If you didn't, he would increase the volume a touch. If you gave him some lip (being hard to this poor guy) he would blast you with music. I also gave him a buck. Talking to him once, he said that that bad teenagers would sometimes take him to the stairs and roll him down them to see him bounce. :mad:

Anyway - I think one can carry an OC in the city.

And if your name is ShootemDead - that's kind of baloney for a residence without gun and portrays a bad attitude which while Bernard Goetz into the slammer. Remember Bernard raving on tape?

Move from NYC and train, if you are a real gun person.

Also, you had no rationale for shooting this person. If you did given the story (if true :rolleyes:), then you should go to jail. No threat of grievous bodily harm that I saw. BTW, having lived in the city, I know the drill. I had a similar experience in DC recently. Polite firmness and the dude goes away. Happens in San Antonio also - where we can have guns.

January 16, 2008, 01:21 PM
Gordo, I know a guy who got stabbed from 7 ft before he could pull his weapon, so i think you should rethink your stepping in to a threatening perp. I practice my fast draw knife just as much as pistol and im way faster with the knife draw straight thrust then pistol. 5 in kershaw fixed blade in polymer sheath, sp101 full load .357 hollow points.

January 16, 2008, 02:00 PM
but had I been armed, and there was more than one, I think I would have shot them both, upon the guy reaching into his pocket..
Debriefing about a situation like this is a good thing. You can vocalize your thoughts and feelings about it, analyze what you feared, and determine what course of action could be taken should it ever happen to you again.

Shooting at people who approach you and ask for money without displaying any weapons of their own is not really a good idea. True, you might convince a jury that there was a disparity of force, however, a couple guys who stick hands in thier pockets doesn't necessarily mean your life is threatened.

I have been in a similar situation, and did not present my weapon because the person who approached me did not display a weapon.

January 16, 2008, 02:30 PM
The troubling part to me was that if NYC had issued you a carry permit and you would have been armed, there may have been a needless, senseless shooting.

That makes you, young man, a poster child for the anti concealed carry group.:(

January 16, 2008, 02:53 PM
I occasionally take the subway into San Francisco to meet Mrs. Grymster for lunch or dinner or some such. I don’t do buses, so I walk the mile and a quarter to her work. Thanks to the idiots in the SF government, the town has way more than its share of panhandlers and despite laws, some of them are very aggressive. I’m also quite certain that some of them revert to mugging when scaring people doesn’t work. When accosted, I don’t say a word, just keep walking and give them the hard stare of a guy who’s been in something like 200 street fights and despite pushing 50 and being seriously overweight, looks like he’d be more trouble than it would be worth.

When accosted while I'm stationary (on the train or whatever), I give the same look and quietly say "can't help you".

Never a guarantee, but has worked for me… so far.

Capt. Charlie
January 16, 2008, 03:00 PM
That makes you, young man, a poster child for the anti concealed carry group.
I agree, King, and unfortunately, so does the original post of this thread.

My hat's off to those of you that posted rational responses, but I think this one's better off closed.

ShootemDown, advice was given that you change your screen name. Your choice, but that's sound advice. See my sig line.