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handyrandyrc said:
This happened to me a couple of weeks ago, and has prompted me to obtain a permit and procure an appropriate firearm.
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There was a guy that had somehow snuck up behind me, and was 2 feet behind, right over my right shoulder. I caught his eye, and he immediately stopped. My adrenaline hit hard, "fight-or-flight" response kicking in. He then hung back about 20-30 feet, then continued to follow.
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Comments? Anyone ever been in a situation like this? Anyone ever been carrying and been in a situation like this?
I'm brand new here, and I've been reading on the OC board, as well as here for a little while now. I decided to post here first, incidentally, because I had a perspective that I thought might be valuable.

First of all, I wasn't there in your situation, and it sounds like the guy was acting really fishy, so this may not apply to your particular situation. Nonetheless, I felt I would share.

I'm a photographer, just returned from college in California, and I've been here now for about 7 months. As a photographer, I often produce my own photo shoots, and often will scout for "models", (a term not reserved only for hot babes, but people to photograph in general) in places just like where you found yourself that adrenaline filled night. Unfortunately, I often find myself in the situation where I can't get a good look at the people that catch my eye, due to multiple factors such as lighting, distance, angle of view, and even sometimes the lack of expressions as people are meandering, etc. I know that if someone recognizes that I'm following them, it may be uncomfortable, so I often try to be VERY stealthy, while at the same time being openly visible and nonchalant. Despite my recent interest in handguns and CC, I have never really thought about this in regards to approaching someone who is considering the safety of themselves or that of their family. This really got the wheels turning in my head, thinking about how a perfectly harmless situation could quickly escalate, if even only in the mind of the "hunted".

I am usually dressed very clean, casual button up shirts (never t-shirts), shorts or pants that are typically clean and nice, but not formal. I would say I dress "normal", if a little dated (sometimes plaid?). I believe this has kept situations fairly non-eventful. However, if I were approaching your family with the purpose of model scouting, I can't help but think that the situation could have gone very similarly, and you might have ended up posting here about a loon wearing a plaid shirt. Of course, I'm more sensitive to this as I approach single women, but I realized that maybe I should be as careful approaching families, or anyone for that matter.

My main purpose for posting, without minimizing the need to stay vigilant, is that sometimes things aren't what they appear, even if we feel we've given the situation the most thorough analyzation possible. I say this as much to protect myself from you when I meet you on the street and approach you for photography purposes, as I do to keep myself in check when I'm out in public carrying my firearm when I receive my CC permit. Of course your situation sounded absolutely improper to even brandish, but the last thing I want when out carrying is an accidental brandish or - heaven forbid - an accidental or mistaken identity shooting.

As I said earlier, I'm totally new here. I suspect my profile will state that I've made 1 post, if you're reading this today. Still I think there is some warrant in talking about the "other guy", since in this case that very well could have been me. (I never have stood in a santa line, so I guess I'm clear this time...)

Thoughts, and responses? I'm definitely learning here.
 

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Jeff Johnson said:
Macwise, you've made a good point. However, my threat level will definitely rise if I see someone dogging my footsteps. Nothing that Randy said in his original post indicated that he would have drawn a gun yet (even if he'd had a CFP). But he would have been justified in contacting the police on the guy so that they could check him out. Had he done so, perhaps the police would have found someone searching for modeling candidates, but they might have found a child-molester looking for an opportunity to grab a child. We just don't know.

By the way, please obey the forum rules and start a thread in the Introduce Yourself forum so that we can get to know you.
I completely agree with you. Behavior such as what he saw is definitely reason to be on heightened alert. I also fully agree that there was no indication that he would have drawn his weapon had he been in possession of one. My point was consequential in that sometimes we don't see the end from the beginning in a fight or flight situation. I was motivated to post because my first thought was "I'm the good guy, and I might be viewed by someone else as just as questionable in my actions or behavior". It just made me think about the situation and wonder how I would respond both in Randy's shoes as well as the unknown fellow, so I thought I'd share.

I am going to post now in the introduce yourself forum now. I was just sitting down to dinner when I finished my first post. :wink:
 
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