They tried to rob me!


Well, it happened on Friday afternoon. I was walking the dog in Edgewood Park here in New Haven. It was about 4:00 in the afternoon, and I was passing through the tunnel that runs under Edgewood Avenue. I was close to the north end of the tunnel, which is only about 12-15 meters, and spans a river, so it is not very confining or private.

As I neared the mouth of the tunnel, two young men, probably about 16 years old, stepped into view with bandanas around their faces, bandit style. They were holding cheap steak knives that were about 5 inches long (and looked very pointy from my perspective!), and they told me to empty my pockets. As they were about 15-20 feet away, and not advancing, I said "Guys, you do not want to do this." They began telling me they wanted my money, ALL of it, and one of them started to try to move around to my right flank.

I took another step back, and I repeated "You do not want to do this." By this time they are threatening to cut me, or kill me, if I did not hand over the contents of my pockets. I repeated "Guys, you do not want to do this."

By this time, they seemed really pissed that I was not compliant with their demands, and they decided to press the issue. They began to come toward me very aggresively, and the old pistol drill practice habit kicked in: Strong side foot back half a step, weak hand pulling up of the shirt, and strong hand going to 4:00. Their eyes got big, and they were off like a shot. I followed them up the steps to Edgewood Avenue, and they were already 75 yards away and increasing.

I called the police, and while I was waiting for them to respond, the park ranger pulled up and said that he had seen the guys run back behind the Park's Department building and head down to the soccer field area. There are only two exits from that area, so I got excited. I was sure that we had a better than even chance of catching the criminal b***ards who tried to assault me.

Well, almost twenty minutes later, a squad car pulls up, takes my story, gets their description, and then chats for awhile. They tell me that it is a fairly common occurence, and seemed generally enured to that type of incident.

Speaking as a former LEO, I was nonplussed, to say the least. Had this happened in my old department, there would have been one car to respond to the complainant, and at least two other cars patrolling the area with the description given to the dispatcher, and then a possibly more concise description from the reporting officer.

Those of you familiar with New Haven know that the Edgewood Park area is easily accessible, close to two different substations, and pretty wide open at 4:00 pm. I haven't received a call from the officers, so I assume that the guys were not apprehended. I will learn more when the report is ready on Monday or Tuesday.

The weirdest part is that I have walked my dog in that park at every time of the night or day that you can imagine. I have never had an issue, although that tunnel has attracted the occasional kid drinking or smoking pot. Never had an issue with my personal safety, though. It really angers me that, after finishing our walk (Oh yes, you knew I would, didn't you?:wink:) I saw single young ladies with baby strollers walking the same path on which I had just been accosted. I walk in that park every day, and I will be DARNED if I will let some thugs push me out of it. I will, however, be stepping up my SA from now on. Sadly, even at 4:00 on a clear, sunny day.

One final insult was the fact that my dog, all eleven pounds of him, was noticeably mute during the whole incident. :angry:
 

HootmonSccy

New member
I'm glad everything turned out ok..
Even if they got away, I'm sure their lives are changed forever, especially if they were 16 or so.. They probably needed to change their shorts when they got home to mommy...
Good job... and thanx for sharing..
:victory:
 
Sounds like it all worked out for the best I'm glade your ok and really glade your dog is doing good. Your story really reminds me of the movie 'The Brave One" with Jodie Foster in the beginning of the movie her and her soon to be husband are out walking their dog in ( i believe central park not 100% on that) they get to a tunnel much like the one in your real life in counter. As they are half way into it almost out (again just like you) About four guys jump out and beat the crap out of her and her boy friend killing him and leaving her for dead. As anyone who has seen the movie can tell it does not hold back anything. I will try and find the clip. But all and all Just glade your ok and not dead. Gods speed and stay alert.
 

Scarecrow

New member
glad to hear you are ok and those idiots did not get anything they wanted. I hope they are caught before they get really stupid and get a gun for crime because obviously their knife thing didn't quite work out for them.
 

2beararms

New member
Glad you are OK.

Your dog is glad you protected him too ... I have one of those, they are really agressive until they realize there is real danger, then it is hide behind the Alpha male ... OK by me, they pay it back with unconditional love.

Pretty nonchelant department you have there. PD here in South Florida would have wanted to find the perps. If you identified yourself as former LEO to the ranger that would have likely gotten you about ten cars and a helicopter here. We have one of the worst gang problems in the country (gangs like warm exoctic locales also), and LEO has found the only semi-effective response is "kill it before it grows".

Two kids with steak knives are not an isolated incident, they are a gang ... period. If that is the offical LEO stance then expect that those knives will move to handguns quickly and within a year may well be groups of five or six with AK's ... welcome to the new world.

One question ... you never did say what (if) you were carrying. Did you ever actually draw? Did the BG ever actually see a weapon?

Could the standard left hand shirt untuck, right hand to 4pm be a distractive defensive move even if unarmed??
 

ricbak

New member
Yeah, Glad your Good Boomer... At Least It was not one of us screwing with your sleep this time..... :biggrin:
 
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gdcleanfun

Banned
Sounds like your recovery is coming along well. Glad you were able to defend yourself! Time for some heavy duty pooch training? :biggrin:
 

utimmer43

New member
+1 for law abiding, armed citizens! Glad you came out on top! What are the odds that this will make the local news? These stories need to be heard. Not only does it shine a positive light on gun ownership, it just might convince those ladies pushing the strollers to start packing more than some spare diapers.

Good job, Boom!
 
Thanks for the well wishes!

One question ... you never did say what (if) you were carrying. Did you ever actually draw? Did the BG ever actually see a weapon?
Could the standard left hand shirt untuck, right hand to 4pm be a distractive defensive move even if unarmed??

Darn it, 2bear. I was hoping that nobody would ask me this question. The truth is: No, I was not carrying. :secret:

My issue (okay, stupid excuse) is this: I have a permit from PA, where I was living before I moved to CT. After moving here, I was out of work for a while, and rationalized putting off taking the requisite class. After I found work and got a little money together, I was finally able to take a class.

Silly me, I thought that I would then be able trot down to the local PD (during business hours, of course), have them take a set of prints, and then submit the relevant paperwork, photos, and fees. Of course, it takes a week or two for me to get down to the PD because of all of the extra training hours at my new job, and when I finally do, I am told that fingerprints are only taken on Tuesday and Thursday between 10am and 12pm (2 hours).

Grumbling, I return the next week at the appropriate time. Lo and behold, the same fellow who told me the week before that prints were only taken at the above mentioned time, now informs me that I need an appointment during the listed windows. I am truly annoyed by this, because he could have told me the week before. I am not generally a "They're all out to get me!" guy, but I do feel that the omission on his part was intentional and malicious.

I finally am able to get an appointment to take my fingerprints...... six weeks later.

Now I am in the terminal "wait" phase. By CT law, the maximum wait for approval or denial is supposed to be eight weeks. Unfortunately, they claim to be backed up several months, and asking some of the local folks in the know, complaining to the state generally results in a quick "denial" from the New Haven PD.

Of course, I can always appeal to the CT Department of Public Safety. Last check, their appeal hearings were more than one year behind.:cray:

The part that really chaps my hide is that I was a sworn LEO for three years. I am Act 120 certified in PA (police academy), I have a PA permit, and my fingerprints are on record all over the place as a result of my former job. While I am not the type to ask for "professional courtesy" to get out of a traffic ticket or other legal trouble, I did let the officers with whom I dealt know that I was former LEO with academy credentials. Ostensibly, that should make their job easier because they can verify training and character much more easily via my old department. In fact, I daresay that, had they provided the same verifiable credentials to our Sherrif's department back in PA, they would have walked out with their permit the same afternoon.

In New Haven: No Dice. :confused:

That said, if push came to shove, I believe that I could have taken the two guys and probably not been too seriously injured, although one never knows. I say this not because I am a big, tough Rambo; I simply commit totally if I commit at all, and I fight extremely dirty. As a private citizen, I have no restrictions on what I can do to protect myself when confronted with a deadly threat. When I was a police officer, my options were far more restricted. That said, I didn't think that a bluff would hurt, considering I was determined unto death not to comply with their assault.

I know that some of you would not agree, and I can respect and understand that. The $44 dollars in my pocket were definitely not worth my life. However, I know that, had they successfully robbed me, they would have probably done the same to someone else. I would feel bad knowing that my refusal to take a stand for what is right ended up harming someone else. Worse, what if their next victim was a woman, and they decided to take something besides money from her. I would have a hard time looking myself in the mirror.

As it stands, maybe the scare that they got (and it seemed pretty effective from my vantage point) will make those young men realize that the $44 dollars in my pocket is not worth one or both of their lives. I do believe that people can learn, and that people can change. Maybe the experience will help one of them.

Sounds like your recovery is coming along well. Glad you were able to defend yourself! Time for some heavy duty pooch training? :biggrin:

Well, at eleven pounds, he could at least yap a little, no?:no:

Yeah, Glad your Good Boomer... At Least It was not one of us screwing with your sleep this time..... :biggrin:

Well, Ricbak, I am sure that you and Festus will uncover something soon that will rob me of my precious beauty rest. Although, to tell the truth, it seems that it is becoming increasingly easy to see in which direction the winds of change are blowing. The current regime is becoming increasingly transparent in their motives, and I don't like what I am seeing.
:help:
 

2beararms

New member
Darn it, 2bear. I was hoping that nobody would ask me this question. The truth is: No, I was not carrying. :secret:

LOL!:biggrin: That just adds soooo much to the story.

Hell yeah, we would all like to read how you performed a classic manuver leaving two dead perps in the street but you would have felt so bad deading them for a steakknife anyway.

But NO, circumstance is that when you need it most, the damn law left you unprotected, but the TRAINING kicks in that if it quacks like a duck and walks like a duck it is likely a duck. So using a proper draw on a non-existent gun still IS MORE GANGSTA THAN GANGSTA!

Originally I was going to hoist one in your honor of self control in not shooting them running away, but now instead I will hoist two in pure honor of having the BALLS TO PULL THIS OFF!!

Well Done!
 

2beararms

New member
Well it's a good thing that you came out of your ordeal unscathed. You should look into other devices of self-defense, like Mace or Pepper Spray, until you receive your carry license. Very effective!!!

Good point by ricardo. Kimber now markets a product called the Lifeact Guardian Angle. It is a 'pepper blaster' that uses the active ingredient in peper spray but launches it through a propriatary nozzel using a small pyrotechnic charge at 90mph so it moves too fast to move out of the spray, sticks when it hits and does not have the sprayback contamination of pepper spray. A bit pricey but a nice, non-lethal option. I keep one in my car all the time for both me and the wife.
 

utimmer43

New member
... The truth is: No, I was not carrying. :secret:.
LOL, OK then. +1 for law abiding unarmed citizens who are perceptive enough to analyze the situation and determine the likelyhood that what you did might work, and convincing enough to pull it off. :yes2:

So now another question comes to mind. Lets say this does make the local news, or by some remote chance one of these punks lurks here, and they come to find that you were not armed and do not have your permit yet. Could be cause for a retaliation. 1) Definatly arm yourself as heavily as is legal without a permit. 2) Could this be used to persuade the "powers that be" to expidite the permitting process, including the ridiculous 6 week wait for a lousey set of finger prints?
 

ricardo900

New member
I finally am able to get an appointment to take my fingerprints...... six weeks later.

Now I am in the terminal "wait" phase. By CT law, the maximum wait for approval or denial is supposed to be eight weeks. Unfortunately, they claim to be backed up several months, and asking some of the local folks in the know, complaining to the state generally results in a quick "denial" from the New Haven PD.

That is totally ridiculous! Six weeks to get printed and another 8+ weeks for the process. It took about 4 weeks for me to receive a non-res. permit.

I am not 100% sure, but I recall that Bridgeport shooting range does fingerprinting after people complete the NRA Basic Pistol Course which is required for the CT CCW.
 
Hoist'em high, 2bear!

Good point by ricardo. Kimber now markets a product called the Lifeact Guardian Angle. It is a 'pepper blaster' that uses the active ingredient in peper spray but launches it through a propriatary nozzel using a small pyrotechnic charge at 90mph so it moves too fast to move out of the spray, sticks when it hits and does not have the sprayback contamination of pepper spray. A bit pricey but a nice, non-lethal option. I keep one in my car all the time for both me and the wife.

Thanks for the toast(s?), 2bear. :alcoholic:

Incidentally, we did get a few of the training units for the Lifeact from Kimber when the department was trying to decide if we would go to the larger Lifeact (looks like a double barreled water gun) or go for the Taser. Needless to say, tasers won hands down. We did have a good time shooting one another with both of the Lifeact models. I may pick up one tomorrow. Good suggestion.

So now another question comes to mind. Lets say this does make the local news, or by some remote chance one of these punks lurks here, and they come to find that you were not armed and do not have your permit yet. Could be cause for a retaliation. 1) Definatly arm yourself as heavily as is legal without a permit. 2) Could this be used to persuade the "powers that be" to expidite the permitting process, including the ridiculous 6 week wait for a lousey set of finger prints?

Good points both, Utimmer. As 2bear suggested, I will pick up a unit or two of the small Kimber Lifeact. I will also have an Asp with me at all times.

As soon as the report is done, I intend to take a copy to the chief and have a very respectful chat. Hopefully, that might facilitate the process.

That is totally ridiculous! Six weeks to get printed and another 8+ weeks for the process. It took about 4 weeks for me to receive a non-res. permit.

I am not 100% sure, but I recall that Bridgeport shooting range does fingerprinting after people complete the NRA Basic Pistol Course which is required for the CT CCW.

Thanks, Ricardo. If I had known that I was returning to CT, I would have applied while I was still in PA. As you know, getting the permit from out of state bypasses the whole local PD process. Unfortunately, the circumstances of my departure were...... sudden. Basically, I had a really bad, really sudden breakup with my fiancee, and I just did not want to see her again. So I left.

As for the six weeks and 8+weeks time frame, New Haven is reputed to take much longer. I really hate the trampling of second (or any other) amendment rights. I'm tempted to become a freestater. Got room for me, S&WM&P40?
:meeting:
 
Boomboy007,I fight extremely dirty
There is no such thing as a dirty fighter just a well educated one. Remember rule number one in a street fight is. THERE ARE NO RULES. No place in a street fight for second place as 95% of the time second place means you are dead or in the ER on your way to being dead.
 

Wolfling68

New member
Nice to see someone else agrees that sometimes priciples are more important than giving in, even at the risk of life and limb.
 

Daugherty16

New member
Bravo

I know the waiting drill; i waited several weeks beyond the "maximum" legal time period for mine - and that was in Madison. Get out of New Haven! Branford, Guilford, or Milford or even West Haven are all acceptable substitues that offer a far better quality of life. I' am certain the NH cops just don't want any more guns around, even in the hands of law abiding citizens. However the law defines their role, therefore they do what they can to delay the process by taking it r e a l l y s l o w l y . . . and once you put this is motion it can go on for a long time. I would suggest finding out who the Sgt or LT is that works on the apps, and call this person every week asking for status. Be totally polite, but bug him enough to move it along. Remind him you're a former LEO and it may speed up.

Anyhow, +++1 for the quick thinking and temerity to draw and present ... er, is that a finger in your pocket sir, or are you drawing down on me? Seriously, I have heard of this being used occasionally, and each time it was effective. Really you'd have been no worse off even if they called your bluff and it was certainly worth the try - it worked.

Very good situational awareness though i probably would have used different verbal judo. Instead of, "you don't want to do this", i hope i would use my command voice to be more direct as in: "Stop! Do not come closer! I am armed and i will shoot you!". Then the draw (or the fake draw, as the case may be).

My wife still thinks i'm nuts for carrying all the time She calls me paranoid. My answer: i'm getting older, not as able to do with my fists and feet what i once could. Also that the world has changed, and the threats to a family are greater and more numerous than ever before. As long as the possibility exists that some hood could storm my house, i will have a ready response. Because i could never live with myself if something i could have prevented, happened to my family because i was unarmed and unable to address the threat. I am not afraid, in fact i am celebrating life - my life, those of my wife, kids, grandkids, all of them - with the most effective means of defense i know. If that is paranoid, so be it.

I think all of us here at USCCA belong to the same club. Hope you get your permit soon so you don't have to play air-holster any more with the local dirtbags-in-training.
 
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