In our daily lives, safety is a top priority, especially when navigating city streets and urban environments. It is essential to acknowledge that certain factors can make individuals more susceptible to street robbery. I’m never surprised when I read the news, about someone who was robbed for their expensive watch. Listen, criminals will steal anything, if what you’re carrying has a value to them.
Raymond sustained those injuries during the scare of his life last Saturday while on his way to the dentist at 9th and Jackson in Oakland. While feeding the parking meter he says a man approached, demanding his watch.
“Immediately he pulled up his shirt and showed me his 9 mm tucked inside his shirt. At that moment I panicked, I screamed for help and I ran onto the street. My wife tried to save me by pulling on his pants.”
Raymond was pistol-whipped and his $30,000 Rolex ripped from his wrist in a matter of seconds.
“I never expected his to happen to me, especially during broad daylight,” he says.
Don’t make yourself a target. Most criminals are looking for an easy payday.
People who walk alone, particularly during the late evening or early morning hours, may be at higher risk of street robbery. Criminals often target isolated individuals as they are perceived as easier targets.
Don’t display your valuables. Displaying expensive or valuable items, such as smartphones, jewelry, or high-end accessories, can attract the attention of potential thieves. Visible wealth can make individuals more appealing targets for street robbery.
Pay attention when you’re out. Being preoccupied with phones, music, or distractions can reduce situational awareness. Not paying attention to one’s surroundings may make it easier for criminals to approach unnoticed.
I still recall being approached by 4 guys who jumped out from the bushes while I took a short cut through my city park, at night. Poorly lit or unfamiliar areas can provide cover for potential robbers. Being cautious and vigilant in such places is crucial to personal safety.
Don’t carry a lot of cash. If you carry a lot of cash, don’t pull out the entire bundle in front of people, such as when paying for something while at a cash register. Carrying excessive cash can make individuals more vulnerable to street robbery. It is advisable to use electronic payment methods whenever possible and carry only necessary cash.
Older adults or those with physical limitations may be perceived as easier targets due to potential difficulties in defending themselves.
Impaired judgment resulting from alcohol or drug use can make individuals more susceptible to becoming victims of street robbery.
It’s essential to remember that no one is to blame for falling victim to street robbery. Criminals bear the responsibility for their actions, and their behavior is never justified. However, understanding potential risk factors can help us take proactive measures to protect ourselves and others:
- Stay Vigilant: Remain aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, seek a safer route or public space.
- Travel in Groups: Walking with friends or in well-populated areas can deter potential robbers and enhance overall safety.
- Minimize Visible Valuables: Keep valuable items concealed or secured, especially in crowded areas.
- Avoid Isolation: When possible, walk in well-lit, populated areas and avoid shortcuts through unfamiliar or dimly lit spaces.
- Stay Connected: Inform someone you trust about your whereabouts and expected arrival time, especially if you plan to walk alone.
- Practice Assertiveness: Stand tall, maintain eye contact, and project confidence. Criminals often target individuals who appear vulnerable.
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