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Old 01-15-2012, 08:59 AM   #29
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Don't stand in the doorway when asking who's there. As someone else stated better to do that from another location.

The ONE time I've been awaken was a cop. He knocked and immediately identified himself. That particular time it was an evacuation due to a truck accident nearby. I think anyone with a brain would knock and state their business right away.
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:30 AM   #30
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Crime is Falling, Despite Economic Woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce C View Post
As said, crime is on the rise...
I was curious; noted that the graphic for violent crimes shows a peak about 1990 and precipitous decline since.

HERE is a great British* article about the decrease of crime in America, which has some experts baffled (for one, because the rate usually rises with economic woes, and we're rebounding from the worst years since the Great Depression).

Still, we can't become complacent. I sense that members generally understand the risk continuum, from roadside rest areas (like parking in Fallujah overnight) to private gated CGs (low risk).

Great ideas!

* Credentialed foreign news sources often have no partisan bias, are more reliable when describing such things.
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:31 AM   #31
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First awful assumption made by some posters..." I always stay at a campground, never at a WalMart or Rest Area" !!!

What in the Blue Blazes makes you believe or ASSUME that criminals dont frequent campgrounds ???

Common sense would dictate that you DO NOT open the door no matter where you are UNTIL you have positively identified the person knocking and what their intent MIGHT be to be disturbing you in the middle of the morning.

As an aside... if you feel threatened "call for Pizza", in most areas pizza delivery will be there before police can finish their donuts, get a travel cap for their free coffee, and a bag of donut holes to go and confirm the address with the diapatcher, type it into their onboard computers and do an OSHA Safety Inspection of the vehicle before rushing out into the "UNKNOWN" !!!

Or you could actually be responsible for your own safety and always carry 6 or 8 highly trained police dogs, hide in the bathroom as you turn the killers loose in case the knocker gets in, and pray, pray, pray ! Surely no self-respecting christian criminal would harm another christian that was Tebowing !!!

In all seriousness... exercise your rights in self defense as best your conscience and abilities allow. And bet that I will not be in the bath praying !
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Old 01-16-2012, 06:16 PM   #32
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I have checked out my 5th wheel, when the truck is connected to the RV as well as if it is parked in any position around the RV the “panic” button on the truck clicker will activate the horn and lights.
If there is one thing that the “bad guys” dislike is noise and lights. However in 25 years of RVing including Boondocking,dry camping in W/Ms and truck stops I have NEVER been woke up in the middle of the night.
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Old 01-16-2012, 06:46 PM   #33
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One option is to ignore the late night caller. A very experienced stealth camper (Tioga George) found that police rousted people that answered the door. However if no-one answered the door the RV was assumed empty and legally parked.
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Old 01-16-2012, 07:28 PM   #34
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Very few unlawful entries occurr in the evening, most occurr during day time when folks are out. Crooks, for the most part don't want a confrontation. Its real simple if you don't overthink it. Acknowledging the persons presence would likely cause the person to move on or to communicate what he/she needs. If its a bad guy, get on your cell to 911, and yes police will get there in a hurry for a prowler call. The third thing is if he knows your in there and tries to get in, all bets are off, defend yourself with whatever you have using as much force as necessary to stop the threat. See its simple
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Old 01-16-2012, 07:34 PM   #35
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Quote:
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As an aside... if you feel threatened "call for Pizza", in most areas pizza delivery will be there before police can finish their donuts, get a travel cap for their free coffee, and a bag of donut holes to go and confirm the address with the diapatcher, type it into their onboard computers and do an OSHA Safety Inspection of the vehicle before rushing out into the "UNKNOWN" !!!
I can only hope you had your tongue planted firmly in your cheek when you wrote that.

Having been an officer who had to knock on one of those doors (and not knowing what is on the other side), we never-the-less, didn't drag our feet responding to a call for assistance. And, I don't know of any officer who would.

Just saying...
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:21 AM   #36
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Thanks BP, I was not going to grace him with a response...he is just rude or dislikes police for some reason! I am sure there are some officers who do not respond as well as they should. but in my 35 years of experience in Houston, we knock each other over trying to get to a live scene and help.

I for one do not care all that much for dougnuts! I much prefer a good cup of Starbucks and a fine cake! However, if that guy truly believes that the pizza delivery is his answer in an emergency...knock your lights out!
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Old 01-17-2012, 11:03 AM   #37
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It is good to see all the responses. I point out the same caution is needed during daylight hours,maybe not to the same degree but you still have to be aware of where you are.
A gun should be the last resort because you will be judged if you used excessive force. Could you accomplished the same thing with less force. Example mace, pepper spray etc.
Turning on outside lights, staying inside your locked coach until you are sure of what is outside. Not sure call 911, honk your horn, use 4 ways, or get out of there if possible.
This is a question we all should all ( every one in the coach) should think about before it happens so you will have a plan of action contrived when you are calm and level headed.
Every scenario will be different. Think before you act.
Just my view Steve
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Old 01-17-2012, 02:50 PM   #38
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OK as a 35 year veteran and current big city police officer I will weigh in.
Here are a few things that we should all keep in mind about personal safety and the use of deadly force.

1. Being aware of your surroundings, risks, etc will help you to make better decissions to begin with. Prevention is always better than responding. Who would park their coach in the middle of a gang fight and get out of it? Pay attention to where you are. I bought a coach so I could have options when traveling.

2. Use of deadly force laws vary from state to state. Before any of us (cops included) decide to start using guns, we must first carefully reflect on what that might end up meaning. I know their are folks who will say and believe that they would rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6, but there is a whole lot more that needs to be said. You or I might be darn justified to shoot at a person threatning us, but it is darn easy to miss and hit an inocent person. We will be held responsible!

3. It is not easy to kill a man. Taking human life, even in self defense is going to seriously complicate your life and that of your families. Right or wrong you will be scrutinized by local law enforcement and the courts for any use of deadly force (some areas that we like to camp have far less contemporary law enforcement and judicial systems then where we live and work). Yes you have the right to use deadly force in most states (better check the laws when you travel) but you will most likely end of defending your actions in court and you will most likely be spending some money!

4. If you are going to rely on a weapon (especially a gun and most especially a semi-auto pistol) you had best know how to use it well. You should practice regularly in realistic scenarios, you should understand what it will do and not do, you should care for it and keep fresh amo in it. Most importantly, have a gun you can shoot accurately in the scenario you expect to encounter, have a gun that you have when you need it, and the correct amo in it! Not every gun works well in every combat scenario!

5. Practice, practice, practice! In self defense you will not be shooting at stationary paper or cans. You will probably have an adrenalin dump, a heart rate of about 190 and you will probably have old information in other words you will be in reactive mode not proactive mode. If you examine the statistics, cops don't do a great job of hitting their targets under stress and most of us practice a lot! A good way to test this, is to exercise at a rate that you would call extreme for about 15 minutes and then shoot your gun with your off hand. That will aproximate how well you will do in a real gun battle!

If you consider all that I just said, and there is a lot I have not said, you might see that having a good awareness of where you are camping is a smart move.

If you are not willing to do the work in order to have confidence that a gun will save you, I suggest changing your plans and being very proactive about where you stay. Or chosing a different self defense system: Base ball bat, pepper spray, making sure that where you camp has a cell phone signal.

If however, you are scared day or night, a motorhome is a pretty strong and secure place to be. You are up high, and if you stay low and in the middle of the coach it would be darn hard to hit you! Making noise, turning on lights, calling 911, and if possible driving away would be my first choices.

Never open the door. I am a cop not a doctor, I am not opening my door for anyone if I have any suspision or concern. I am not talking about some small child in freezing weather, I am talking about walk ups in the dark. If they are not in the coach with you, it will take them a long time to get in.

At the end of the day, this is a worthy topic for travelers to discuss. Like with fire safety, we should have a plan, practice the plan, and then try to use the plan should an emergency occur.

Best Regards,

Dave
Good advise Dave - been there and done that too - retired now - one plus about a Wal-mart with permission to overnight is security cameras....park your rig so the cameras are on the door side - and also, a lot of the Walmarts (Super) are open all night.....bottom line, unless you know for sure don't open the door to anyone - you may be facing a gun as soon as you do.
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Old 01-17-2012, 04:38 PM   #39
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If someone knocks, simple tell them that door is broken and go to the back door. While they're trying to find the back door, you have time to gather your wits, weapon of choice and turn on the docking lights to see who it is. Then you can decide whether to open the door or not. When the police officer or legitimate neighbor chides you about not having a back door, just tell them you were napping and forgot you weren't at you S&B.

I wonder why we don't install things like a nice bright light, maybe a docking light over the door and maybe a convex mirror in a handy place so that we can see who's there? If your porch light is like mine its pretty dark out there even when it's on.
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:31 PM   #40
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DAVE1956,

Nicely done...extremely well put.

L.E.O in MI
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Old 01-18-2012, 06:29 AM   #41
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Thanks BP, I was not going to grace him with a response...he is just rude or dislikes police for some reason! I am sure there are some officers who do not respond as well as they should. but in my 35 years of experience in Houston, we knock each other over trying to get to a live scene and help.

I for one do not care all that much for dougnuts! I much prefer a good cup of Starbucks and a fine cake! However, if that guy truly believes that the pizza delivery is his answer in an emergency...knock your lights out!
Thanks Dave1956....I called Houston "Home" for 20 + Years and love'd all (OK, "most" - I'm sure you were in that group) of my brothers and sisters in Blue!
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Old 01-18-2012, 07:04 AM   #42
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If someone knocks, simple tell them that door is broken and go to the back door. While they're trying to find the back door, you have time to gather your wits, weapon of choice and turn on the docking lights to see who it is. Then you can decide whether to open the door or not. When the police officer or legitimate neighbor chides you about not having a back door, just tell them you were napping and forgot you weren't at you S&B.

I wonder why we don't install things like a nice bright light, maybe a docking light over the door and maybe a convex mirror in a handy place so that we can see who's there? If your porch light is like mine its pretty dark out there even when it's on.
I installed one of those super bright motion sensor lights. I figured the bad guy would be startled to see the light come on so quickly and may just go away. If not, I will at least be able to see him.
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