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  1. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Portland
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    183

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    Keep trusting your instincts. If your gut says don't ride by this man's property, then don't do it. I agree with the drive to ride advice. You'll at least get to ride, even though it is more of a hassle.

    Stay safe!

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Lakewood, Co
    Posts
    1,061
    Does your stae have a bicycling advocacy group? If so, contact them. Are there and state laws protecting bicyclists. In Colorado it is illegal to harrass cyclists. 3 days after the law passed 2 jerks in an old clunker passed very close to my friend at 50 mph. The passenger leaned out the side of the car and pushed my friend's left hand down. Fortunately, his hand was positioned near the center of his handlebars so he didn't go down. He called 911 and there just happened to be a police officer nearby. The guys were well known in the area for various offenses so they ended up with a court date.

    Keep a record of everything (dates, times, actions) the guy does. Pictures or video could be helpful. Our neighborhood was having a problem with a noisy motorcyclist. He was well known as a neighborhood bully and residents were afraid to complain because they were worried he would damage their houses. I kept a record and made it well known, to neighbors and police, that I knew the ordinances, (his muffler isn't regulation) and was keeping a log of his activities, the noise died down.

    Do you release your brake before you remove your wheel? It's the first thing you do before loosening the wheel.

    Don't feel bad about calling the police when others are breaking the law. I once called the police on my neighbor. He had parked his car near our house, his windows were down and music was playing very loudly. It was 2:30 am and a Sat nite. I thought someone in the neighorhood was having a party so I called it in. Turns out my neighbor was drunk and had passed out with his keys in the ignition. A no, no where I lived so they took him in. I still feel bad about that.

    I agree with the others, trust your intuition and ride somewhere else for now.
    Last edited by Kathi; 11-11-2009 at 08:33 AM.

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    561
    Quote Originally Posted by ginny View Post
    Also, you already know he has a gun, so I'm not sure I would want to enter an arms race with a crazy person. I would absolutely take the other road that he cannot see you on. As far as seeing him trespass, I would call the cops every single time. You could consider getting a restraining order (?) I don't know anything about them. Do you have to confront the individual to get one? I know it wouldn't help, but you would be documenting harassment.
    A restraining order is a civil document, not a criminal one. A protective order is, but I doubt you have a case for its issuance. Harassment is very, very difficult to prove and is not really a good charge. You can get a criminal trespass order against him if he is on your property. And yes, it is the job of the police to respond when you need them...it sounds like you are a frequent flyer with them, but that is not always a bad thing. 911 hangups happen, we ALWAYS respond even when we get a call back. They get irritating when people let their kids play with the phone over and over, but once is understandable.

    I am certainly NOT for getting into a gun battle with him. I am not sure how many CHL holders are actually prepared to shoot someone. I don't carry my weapon off duty because I am not prepared to get into a gun battle over anything. On duty, I have to, and I know with 100 percent surity that I would do it to protect myself or someone else. And I know that I am trained to shoot under stress and not hit a kid down the block. I don't know many CHL carriers that train under those conditions, and the statistics involved in civilian shootings weigh heavily in favor of the crazy people and against a casual passerby who gets caught in the crossfire. Find another option for that.

    You are in a bad spot. I don't have good advice for you except to ride somewhere else. Being informed is a good thing. Is he a registered sex offender? On parole (in which case he cannot have a weapon even on his own property)? Have protective orders against him? Use whatever is public record. Get a big dog, be aware of what is going on around you, and notify the police of the situation (probably in person, go down and talk to an officer...a good way to start is probably "I know you guys have been out to my place before but....").

    Bummer.

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    287
    Thank you all SO MUCH for understanding why I'm afraid and not acting like I'm some sort of chicken for being so scared! Also, thanks for not acting like I'm an idiot for calling the police for those other things in the past. And thanks for not thinking I'm some sort of fundamentalist nut or something for having a gun. I'm not a violent person at all, but I don't want to have to be afraid all of the time just because I'm a woman. I had two different men try to rape me when I was 14, and I'm not going to spend my life not doing things just because I'm afraid. I have every right to enjoy my life just as much as any man can enjoy his.

    I decided to go ahead and try riding down that other road and see if I ran into him. If he was sitting in his house actually trying really hard to see me, he'd probably be able to, especially if he was using binoculars. On my way back, I could barely make out his 4-wheeler heading down his driveway but he must not have seen me because he didn't follow me.

    I brought a small gun in my jacket pocket, and a knife in my pants. It was actually fine riding like that - it wasn't uncomfortable at all and it didn't stretch out my jacket. I'll plan on carrying both items all the time when I ride from now on. Even though he's armed, he doesn't know that I am. It's kind of like when a big dog chases you - the last thing they expect is for you to stop and confront them, and the last thing he'd expect would be for a woman to be armed.

    I only went about 10 miles today but I feel like a different woman. It's amazing how much a little bit of exercise will elevate a person's mood.

    I will go to the police station with my son and husband if I have another run-in with him. You're right. It's their job to protect people and, even though they wouldn't be able to get here fast enough to help me if he tried to hurt me, at least I'd have a report on file if anything happened. If he bothers me again I'll get a restraining order.

    I wonder if he's schizophrenic and off his meds or something. If that's the case, they can bring him to the hospital and have him involuntarily admitted for a few days until they get him back on his medications. From what I've heard, his wife is actually crazier than he is - so he'll probably have to get into some sort of trouble before anybody brings him to the hospital.

    Ginny, Mommybird, thanks for sharing your scary stories. I was starting to think there was something wrong with me - like I attract nut cases or something.

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
    Posts
    5,203
    Please do re-read Kenyonchris' post about carrying a gun. She is a police officer, and I really respect her experience.

  6. #21
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    287
    Quote Originally Posted by kenyonchris View Post
    A restraining order is a civil document, not a criminal one. A protective order is, but I doubt you have a case for its issuance. Harassment is very, very difficult to prove and is not really a good charge. You can get a criminal trespass order against him if he is on your property. And yes, it is the job of the police to respond when you need them...it sounds like you are a frequent flyer with them, but that is not always a bad thing. 911 hangups happen, we ALWAYS respond even when we get a call back. They get irritating when people let their kids play with the phone over and over, but once is understandable.

    I am certainly NOT for getting into a gun battle with him. I am not sure how many CHL holders are actually prepared to shoot someone. I don't carry my weapon off duty because I am not prepared to get into a gun battle over anything. On duty, I have to, and I know with 100 percent surity that I would do it to protect myself or someone else. And I know that I am trained to shoot under stress and not hit a kid down the block. I don't know many CHL carriers that train under those conditions, and the statistics involved in civilian shootings weigh heavily in favor of the crazy people and against a casual passerby who gets caught in the crossfire. Find another option for that.

    You are in a bad spot. I don't have good advice for you except to ride somewhere else. Being informed is a good thing. Is he a registered sex offender? On parole (in which case he cannot have a weapon even on his own property)? Have protective orders against him? Use whatever is public record. Get a big dog, be aware of what is going on around you, and notify the police of the situation (probably in person, go down and talk to an officer...a good way to start is probably "I know you guys have been out to my place before but....").

    Bummer.
    Yeah - the last thing I want is to be labeled a "frequent flyer" and not have their help if I need it some day. They've only actually been out here the two times, and both of them were 5 years ago (the time when my son accidentally dialed '911' and the time when the hunters were shooting guns outside my window). I did stop by the station about 6 months ago to let them know somebody was prowling on the property (now I think it was probably him) but the other calls were all a year ago or more. . . . .

    I checked and he's not on the sexual offender list.

    I have a big beautiful very protective German Shepherd. Too bad she couldn't keep up with me on my bike . . . . .

    I am probably one of the very few CHL holders who is absolutely prepared to shoot somebody. . . . . but I don't want to talk any more about guns and shooting people anymore on here.
    Last edited by staceysue; 11-11-2009 at 09:13 AM.

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    257
    Driving to bike would lower the stress of the situation and let you enjoy a ride without looking over your shoulder. Depending on your vehicle setup, it might be easier to load your bike in the back seat. Whatever makes it easier and the least amount of stress.

    Sounds like an unfortunate situation. Neighbors are always an issue in the city or in the boonies. Why is getting along so difficult?

    Sarah

  8. #23
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    287
    Quote Originally Posted by sarahkonamojo View Post
    Driving to bike would lower the stress of the situation and let you enjoy a ride without looking over your shoulder. Depending on your vehicle setup, it might be easier to load your bike in the back seat. Whatever makes it easier and the least amount of stress.

    Sounds like an unfortunate situation. Neighbors are always an issue in the city or in the boonies. Why is getting along so difficult?

    Sarah
    I drive a Prius - so it has a hatchback. There's plenty of room if I take off the wheel but it takes so much strength to open the "quick release" thing on the wheel and I'm afraid I'm not getting it on tight enough when I put it back on. Also, I'm always knocking the front brakes around when I lay the bike in the car . . . . . I know there's a very simple solution. People do it all the time!

    Yeah - dumb ol' neighbors!

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,066
    I have absolutely no experience with this kind of thing, but it strikes me that this man sounds a little like an aggressive dog. If you can't reason with him, you can either confront him, or make him lose interest. By a confrontation you want to either shame him or scare him back, and both make him, in a sense, more "interested" in you, for lack of a better word. I'm not sure you want that level of attention, and it could make him want to get back at you somehow.

    I'm not in any way saying you should skulk around and hide, but it may be that your best bet is making yourself "uninteresting". Either by ignoring him, if possible, or simply by removing yourself from his sight for a while so that he latches onto something else to do and forgets about his little "game".

    But please do tell the police, and any neighbours you might have too.

    PS. The quick-release on your wheel does not have to be on that tight. If you have to use a little effort - no leverage - to open it, that's plenty tight.
    Last edited by lph; 11-11-2009 at 10:11 AM.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  10. #25
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Little Egypt
    Posts
    1,867
    I live in a rural area as well where the 4-wheelers outnumber the bicycles and had an incident last year with a family on our riding route over their dogs. We couldn't ride past the house without both dogs coming at us from both sides of the road. This particular evening, my husband sprayed the dogs as we went by and the woman of the house actually got in her SUV with her small children in the back and chased us down screaming and yelling and using language that made me blush---in front of her children. She threatened to call the police on us to which my husband replied "Go ahead. I'll call them too." I rode home to get our truck and my husband rode back to her house to wait on the police. While he waited by the mailbox, the neighbors surrounded him on their 4 wheelers riding in circles yelling how they saw him spray the dogs and calling him names. The sight of a man in spandex on a bicycle in this area of the world was as odd as snow in July.

    I arrived the same time as the police and the officer was wonderful. They used the same language with him and demanded he arrest us. He told the dog owners they were lucky because he would've used his gun instead of pepper spray on the dogs and they were the ones in the wrong. It gave us some satisfaction but it didn't change a thing. They still let the dogs run loose and a week later they knocked an elderly man off his bike and sent him to the hospital. Because we had called the police and made an official report earlier, they were able to send animal control to the house this time and threaten to take the dogs. They still run loose but have been sprayed several times since and have learned to stay in the yard when we go by.

    I agree with Kenyon Chris and kathi.......You should document what has happened and definitely make a report. It might help someone else who is having problems with this creep as well.
    __________________
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." George Bernard Shaw

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  11. #26
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    561
    Quote Originally Posted by staceysue View Post
    Yeah - the last thing I want is to be labeled a "frequent flyer" and not have their help if I need it some day. They've only actually been out here the two times, and both of them were 5 years ago (the time when my son accidentally dialed '911' and the time when the hunters were shooting guns outside my window).

    I am probably one of the very few CHL holders who is absolutely prepared to shoot somebody. . . . . but I don't want to talk any more about guns and shooting people anymore on here.
    You would never NOT have their help regardless of how many times you called. It is our job to come, even if we have to come six times a night. Eventually one (not you) will get charged with filing a false report if we keep coming out for non-legitimate things, but it sounds like the things you have called about have been fine.

    You brought up the gun as a method of self defense and have said you are carrying it, so I feel that it is an important point to address, and I hope to give you a qualified opinion on it so that you can be informed. If you carry it legally, and it makes you feel better, that's great. But please, PLEASE be aware that statistics put you at *greater* risk of shooting a bystander or putting yourself in harms way not to mention being criminally liable for the shooting (even if it is "justified"...you would be amazed). Shooting under stress decreases MY accuracy by 60% (or all LE), and I regularly shoot under stress (with sim rounds, when I am being shot at), for civilians without that training, the chances you will make a shot you would NORMALLY make decreases to 20%. If it is a difficult or moving target, less than 10%. That round that you miss has to go somewhere. Add to that the fact that reaction is slower than action, and the chances of a gun as an effective means of self defense outweigh the risks involved in carrying it. For home defense, when you have a chance to surprise someone, be on target, or even take a deep breath, the percentages are slightly more favorable.

    I am in favor of putting your bike in the car and riding elsewhere so that you can ride unarmed. Use your gun for home protection. Carry pepper spray if you have trouble. Let the police know about your problems so they can check him out. If you catch him on your property get a criminal trespass order (remember, restraining orders are civil in nature only, no police can enforce it).

  12. #27
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Newport, RI
    Posts
    3,821
    Quote Originally Posted by staceysue View Post
    I drive a Prius - so it has a hatchback. There's plenty of room if I take off the wheel but it takes so much strength to open the "quick release" thing on the wheel and I'm afraid I'm not getting it on tight enough when I put it back on.
    You can order a new quick release skewer for your wheel for around $15 or $20 (I can't remember, that might be for one or the pair, but either way, it's pretty cheap). I had one I hated on my commuter (it was a Specialized that came stock on my old bike, low end, and didn't lock unless I used all my strength, or asked for help, which was annoying), and got a much easier to use Shimano set that's taken the stress out of loading my bike in my car.

    Good luck dealing with the nut-case!
    Last edited by redrhodie; 11-11-2009 at 02:22 PM.

  13. #28
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    142
    I live in a rural area and don't ride in my neighborhood because the roads are curvy and hilly. Cars go by fast and I'm just chicken to ride under those conditions.

    Rather than ride where I'm not comfortable my bike stays in the back of my van until I'm ready to ride. I have 3 neighborhoods in town where I ride and a few in other towns I go to when I can. Riding should be an enjoyable, stress free experience. I hope you can find good places to ride where you can relax and have a great time!

    I hope the situation with your neighbor can be resolved so you can return to riding in your own neighborhood.

  14. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    561
    Quote Originally Posted by staceysue View Post

    If he bothers me again I'll get a restraining order.
    (snip)
    I wonder if he's schizophrenic and off his meds or something. If that's the case, they can bring him to the hospital and have him involuntarily admitted for a few days until they get him back on his medications.
    You will need a protective order, not a restraining order. And you have to have more than what you have told us here to have one issued. Assault or something. It is a shame that something has to happen, but that is how it is.

    The police can take him on an Emergency Medical detention only if he is proving to be an immediate and obvious threat to himself or someone else, not just because he is off his meds. I cannot stress the importance of reporting these incidents so that you have a history. And then avoid him like the plague.

  15. #30
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,501
    (((((((staceysue)))))))

    So sorry you have to deal with this. I live in the country, too, and I completely understand everything you're saying.

    I just have one thing to add:

    You don't have to take your front wheel off to put your bike in a Prius. (Not unless you have passengers and need to keep the back seats up, anyhow.)

    I don't take the wheel off my 50 cm road bike, and I've carried a buddy's 58 cm road bike, and there was room for a bike bigger than his. It slides right in.

    You'd be amazed at what can go in the back of your Prius... and so will everyone at Best Buy.


    KC, she has plenty to get a restraining order in Ohio. It's different in every state. As is the issue of whether it has to be a domestic situation, or whether stranger stalking qualifies. It wouldn't hurt to talk to a lawyer, although when someone's really wacko as this guy sounds like, it's debatable how much good a court order will do...
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

 

 

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