THE STORY: 4am. A woman is stopped at a red light. She is accosted by 2 gun-wielding men. We do NOT know how she was accosted but you will see my assumptions below. They car-jack the vehicle with her in it. They sexually assault her. Drop her on a corner and take off in her vehicle.
COULD THIS HAVE BEEN PREVENTED: the men gained access to this woman’s vehicle in 1 of 2 ways:
1) she was driving with her doors unlocked, so they opened the door, showed her a gun and ordered her to drive.
2) she was stopped, her doors WERE locked, but when they produced a gun and told her to open the door – - she complied.
Whether to prevent a car-jacking, assault, or even a mere robbery attempt, it is ALWAYS a good idea to drive with the doors locked and windows up – - especially at night. This prevents someone from just getting into your vehicle.
But you say, “Richard, my windows were rolled up and the doors were locked. The man tapped his gun against the glass and told me to open the door. What was I supposed to do – - let him shoot me?” This gets into a 2nd arena. The majority of people showing weapons are not interested in USING the weapon. The weapon is an intimidator intended to get someone to do what the criminal wants (hand over money, accompany them to a remote location, etc.) – - in this case it was “give me your car” and subsequently the woman with it.
You’re stopped at a red light. It’s 4 am (in other words no cars). SOMEONE TAPS A GUN ON YOUR WINDOW. YOU HIT THE GAS PEDAL, RUN THE RED LIGHT AND CALL THE POLICE. It’s highly unlikely the person is going to start shooting. And given that many female abductions result in the murder of the woman, driving away and having the criminal shooting at me is a risk I would take.
HOWEVER this brings me to an important point. I see many drivers pull up to a red light or stop sign behind another car and they pull RIGHT UP to the other car’s bumper. You always want to be able to see the other car’s rear wheels touching the ground. By being able to see this, you will have created a safe distance between your car and the one in front of you.
• This gap permits you to get around the car in front of you if it stalls or is stalled.
• It enables you to get around the car if the driver tries to get out and attack you for any reason.
• And, last but not least, it creates a buffer zone so that in the event you are rear ended, you are less likely to slam into the car in front of you.
This woman was lucky. Normally when a woman is taken in a vehicle, she is killed. This particular case also supports a point I make in my book, which is if a man is robbed, the robber takes the victim’s wallet and/or watch and takes off, but when a crime is committed against a woman, it is not unusual for it to turn into some type of sexual assault.
Stay alert and stay safe.