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Thread: Incident at Dick's Drive in, Capitol Hill

  1. #1
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    This isn't really an open carry incident as I wasn't harassed but I didn't have to draw.

    Around 12:40 AM on 1 Jan 2009 my girlfriend and I went to Dicks Drive in on broadway, there were huge lines. Anyways, I was carrying my XD in my Serpa openly only my side. My GF noticed a suspicious man trying a key on multiple cars. He was suspiciously putting his key into the keyhole and looking around like he was checking for someone. It was very obvious that he either had a duplicate key or found some keys on the ground and was checking them.

    I said, "Hey man, what you doing to my car?" (Even though it wasn't my car) and he points to an integra next to it and yells back, "This is your car, this is my car (pointing to the car he was trying to get in (a green ford focus))" I was like, "No, that's my car, why are u trying to get in it?" and he goes, "Hey buddy, who the **** are you?" and I was like "I think you're trying to steal the car." So he finally jimmies the passenger door open and I pick up my cell and dial 911, retreating back to the line. He closes the door and starts to walk towards me. Staring at me. This guy was prolly late 40's, early 50's and wearing a black leather jacket and needed a haircut. He looked a little bit homeless. He started to get closer to me and I shouted loudly, "Back off! Back off!" I had my left hand (strong side) on my phone so I didn't have it near my sidearm. He got within three feet of me and I said Back off one more time and he finally backed up a couple feet and was like, "Hey hey hey no need for police." and I was like "Sorry, I think you're stealing that car." He says, "****" then walks away, opens the passenger door and unlocks the driver side. Meanwhile I'm describing the car to the police and describing what he's doing. This guy goes, "Hey man, you have a gun, go stop him." Unfortunately I was not 100% certain he was stealing the car, more like 99% so I wasn't going to risk like drawing on him or anything as I would get in deep crap. So I basically told him I can only use my gun to protect life.

    Anyways, I don't know what happened, the guy drove off and the police never came. I don't know what would have happened had I not had my pistol. A bunch of things were racing through my mind, "What if he has a weapon?" "What if he swings?" "When is the line do I draw?" "Is my GF okay?" I didn't even make a mention, or a gesture to my weapon though. I think having it though may have prevented a physical altercation.

    Crazy.



  2. #2
    State Researcher Kevin Jensen's Avatar
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    While I applaud your situational awareness, I don't feel like it was the best idea to say anything to him. Especially since you were armed. If you feel that someone is engaged in unlawful activity, then by all means call 911.Let the police handle the police work. Like you said at the end of your post, your weapon is to defend life, not a car. I would hate to hear about anyone having to draw a weapon over a stupid car.
    "An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life." Robert A. Heinlein

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    then again that stupid car represents someone's work in buying it. That's time taken from their life to own property. I wouldn't be trying to defend someone else's property but if it's my property I won't let someone steal it. Though that doesn't mean anyone needs to get shot.

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    Regular Member compmanio365's Avatar
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    tito887 wrote:
    then again that stupid car represents someone's work in buying it. That's time taken from their life to own property. I wouldn't be trying to defend someone else's property but if it's my property I won't let someone steal it. Though that doesn't mean anyone needs to get shot.
    If it was my car, then I know it's being stolen, and I'll use whatever means are allowed to stop the felony happening in front of me. But in this situation, I'd probably react the same way he did. If it's some stupid guy trying to steal the car and you confront the person, there is a good chance he'll run off. At least that has been my experience. Same idea as the potential for OC to be a deterrent; a bad guy normally doesn't want to pick a fight, he wants to steal what he's targeted and get out with nobody the wiser. But I'm not going to draw on some guy when I don't know for absolute certain that he is committing a felony. Now, when the guy started towards him, in that situation, I'd be ready to draw, hand on gun.....remember the Tueller Drill......

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    compmanio365 wrote:
    If it was my car, then I know it's being stolen, and I'll use whatever means are allowed to stop the felony happening in front of me. But in this situation, I'd probably react the same way he did. If it's some stupid guy trying to steal the car and you confront the person, there is a good chance he'll run off. At least that has been my experience. Same idea as the potential for OC to be a deterrent; a bad guy normally doesn't want to pick a fight, he wants to steal what he's targeted and get out with nobody the wiser. But I'm not going to draw on some guy when I don't know for absolute certain that he is committing a felony. Now, when the guy started towards him, in that situation, I'd be ready to draw, hand on gun.....remember the Tueller Drill......
    +1

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    compmanio365 wrote:
    tito887 wrote:
    then again that stupid car represents someone's work in buying it. That's time taken from their life to own property. I wouldn't be trying to defend someone else's property but if it's my property I won't let someone steal it. Though that doesn't mean anyone needs to get shot.
    If it was my car, then I know it's being stolen, and I'll use whatever means are allowed to stop the felony happening in front of me. But in this situation, I'd probably react the same way he did. If it's some stupid guy trying to steal the car and you confront the person, there is a good chance he'll run off. At least that has been my experience. Same idea as the potential for OC to be a deterrent; a bad guy normally doesn't want to pick a fight, he wants to steal what he's targeted and get out with nobody the wiser. But I'm not going to draw on some guy when I don't know for absolute certain that he is committing a felony. Now, when the guy started towards him, in that situation, I'd be ready to draw, hand on gun.....remember the Tueller Drill......
    +1

    It's the apathy of our society that many of our criminals rely on to commit crimes.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

  7. #7
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    I feel like confronting him was the right thing. I was just trying to raise awareness to him attempting to steal the car. I figured it would scare him off. I would want someone to do the same thing if it were my car getting stolen. I didn't attempt to physically stop him. Just tried to draw attention and when that didn't work i called 911.

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    Sounds like you handled it just fine to me, you were aware of the situation and handled it with the least amount of violence possible. You get an atta boy from me for what its worth.

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    You handled the situation as you should have. East precient for SPD was busy last night and oddly enough, at about the same time the U District stuff was going down, SPD was chasing an officer shot call in that area (that was bogus).

    Should you use deadly force to stop a property crime? As repulsive as it may seem to those of us who work for our things, NO. Think about the use of deadly force: for the protection of one's self and the protection of others in your immediate area. You were correctly processing the steps you needed to take to protect yourself, your lady and others. You also did the best thing in that you provided clear descriptions of the vehicle and the subject involved, direction of travel and so on.

    We have no laws granting us relief from the use of weapons to prevent property theft and that has come to challenge people in the past. You had a reasonable suspicion that the person was up to no good or at least prowling cars but no proof.

    You took the appropriate steps, did the correct actions and likely prevented a prowl or theft. The only thing I would take you to task on is letting him get as close as he did. That showed aggression that certainly would have put your in the plus column if you had to defend yourself. No doubt a lesson learned.



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    Morris wrote:
    Should you use deadly force to stop a property crime? As repulsive as it may seem to those of us who work for our things, NO. Think about the use of deadly force: for the protection of one's self and the protection of others in your immediate area.
    Unless of course you live in the great state of Texas.

    See Subchapter D. Protection of Property - http://tlo2.tlc.state.tx.us/statutes....000009.00.htm

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    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    Morris wrote:
    You took the appropriate steps, did the correct actions and likely prevented a prowl or theft. The only thing I would take you to task on is letting him get as close as he did. That showed aggression that certainly would have put your in the plus column if you had to defend yourself. No doubt a lesson learned.
    +1. You did well, save for that.

    If someone is obviously coming at you aggressively, that is the time to switch your phone to the non-strong side hand (where it should have been in the first place) and prepare to draw (hand on pistol, not drawing) while telling them to back off. If he didn't back off, you were well within your rights to draw.

    IANAL.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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    Hindsigh is always 20/20. Def a lesson learned

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    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    Kildars wrote:
    Hindsigh is always 20/20. Def a lesson learned
    Agreed. I'm not trying to Monday-morning-quarterback... just trying to point out the slight error that I'm sure he'll learn from.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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  14. #14
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    Yeah. He saw my gun and that's when he backed off which is why I feel had I not been carrying it could have gotten worse. I have a friend who works for SPD in the East Precinct. I wonder if he could tell me what happened.

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    Remember, that one looses his right to self-defense as a legal defense if he is the one to start the altercation. I am not too sure that a judge/jury wouldn't find that the OP herewas the one who started the altercation.

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    Regular Member compmanio365's Avatar
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    Marty Hayes wrote:
    Remember, that one looses his right to self-defense as a legal defense if he is the one to start the altercation. I am not too sure that a judge/jury wouldn't find that the OP herewas the one who started the altercation.
    Telling someone you're calling the police cause you think they are stealing a car is "starting an altercation"? It's not like he went up and tried to hogtie the guy.....

    Dunno how a jury or judge would see it, but I think it's weird that if he had been forced into shooting this guy if he produced a weapon, that Kildars would be the one in trouble here......doesn't seem quite right to me. But then there's a lot of things about the law these days that doesn't seem right or fair.

  17. #17
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    Comp:

    The original post said:

    "I said, "Hey man, what you doing to my car?" (Even though it wasn't my car) and he points to an integra next to it and yells back, "This is your car, this is my car (pointing to the car he was trying to get in (a green ford focus))" I was like, "No, that's my car, why are u trying to get in it?" and he goes, "Hey buddy, who the @#$% are you?" and I was like "I think you're trying to steal the car." "

    This action was what I was alluding to in my analysis, not calling 911.

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    I still do not think that is starting an altercation. I did nothing physical. If someone is yelling at you.. you do not have the right to go up and punch them and say "well it was self defense he started the altercation."

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    I would lean towards not thinking your actions would be considered those of a first agressor either, but the fact is, neither you nor I would be the one to determine that. It would be a jury (if you ended up having to use your pistol against the guy). I just used the example to make a point, that being, perhaps it is better not to get involved in preventing possible property crimes. YOu said he drove off, what car did he drive off in? You never said.

  20. #20
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Kildars wrote:
    Around 12:40 AM on 1 Jan 2009 my girlfriend and I went to Dicks Drive in on broadway, there were huge lines. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------My GF noticed a suspicious man trying a key on multiple cars. He was suspiciously putting his key into the keyhole and looking around like he was checking for someone. It was very obvious that he either had a duplicate key or found some keys on the ground and was checking them.

    Crazy.

    At 12:40 AM on Broadway is it not a possibility that he was merely drunk and having a difficult time finding his car? In my youth I can remember one or two incidents like this where it wouldn't have mattered if my name was on the car in neon lights, I would have had trouble finding mine. I would even be looking around to see if there were any cops around before I got in and started driving.

    In this case, if he WAS drunk he also might have been beligerant enough to get back in someone's face if challenged. All the more reason to use the Cell Phone first, Let the police do their work, and use your own weapon for the reason you carry it---self defense.



    BTW, are Dick's Fries still good or has Seattle's No Trans-Fat law made them just another fried shoestring potato?
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

  21. #21
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    I still think the prudent thing to do is stop him if he was drunk too. Drunk driving kills a lot of people.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

  22. #22
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    I would have to think twice before confronting the suspect, a 911 call in Seattlefor property crimes or even a physical confrontationis almost worthless. If the policeeven show up they will more concerned about you being armed thanthat suspicious charactor. That is my experiences in Seattle.

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