Wrong turns on purpose
Posted 04 June 2013 - 08:30 PM
Posted 28 June 2013 - 09:34 AM
It's been a few years since the last time I was tailed; but, as I remember it, I had just left the jewelry store and was on my way home when I suddenly realized that I was definitely being followed by a small dark blue Honda. The store I had just left was, also, a manufacturing plant where raw gold and various precious stones were kept for, both, sale and assembly. Like most jewelers, nowadays, the company bought, 'old gold' and antique, 'estate jewelry' too. On-site security was VERY tight! From the parking lot through the front door there were, at least, four hi-resolution cameras actively recording. Everybody, including all of the customers, had to be, 'buzzed-in'; and all of the jeweler's personnel were armed - Even his wife!
As I walked out the front door that afternoon I saw the guy parked at the Post Office on the other side of the street from the store. (I always notice any face that's looking, directly, my way. Inside or outside of a vehicle doesn't matter. In this instance it was the fact that the driver was looking directly at either me or the building I had just come out of that caught my attention.) When I pulled out of the lot the car at the Post Office pulled out right after me, and followed me on down the road. For the first two miles I followed my normal course toward home. The blue Honda stayed well behind me, but continued to follow.
I knew what I was going to do! Part of my trip home was on a winding mountain road. I, 'short signaled' the first sharp right-hand turn, waited to see if the following car would turn with me; and, when it did, I immediately sped up. At the last curve I suddenly turned left onto a long straightaway that I knew had a small row of condominiums near the other end. I raced down the road, pulled into the condo's parking lot and turned around so that my own vehicle was facing the roadway; and anyone coming down the road would have to pass directly in front of me.
Next I stepped out of the vehicle, checked myself over, and waited to see if the following vehicle had, 'taken the bait'. Sure enough! A few seconds later along it comes. At the last second the driver saw me standing right there by the side of the road with my body partially protected by my own vehicle. If he knew us he, also, knew that I was armed. (I can still see the surprised, perhaps even frightened, look on his face as he drove past!) I'd placed him at a distinct disadvantage; and, to his credit, he realized it.
In order to prevent me from, 'turning the tables' on him, his next move was (in my opinion) absolutely perfect! As I jumped back in the car and began to follow him he, suddenly, pulled into the very next driveway he came to, got out, and immediately engaged one of the building's occupants who was sitting on the front porch. I give the guy a lot of credit; it was a shrewd move on his part. I stayed out on the road, watching him for a few minutes; and when he didn't leave I decided to drive off. I waited at the end of the road for about 5 more minutes before driving back. Sure enough! He and his car were gone. When I approached the woman on the porch to ask about the guy she told me that he'd said he was an insurance salesman who was looking for someone named, 'Mr. Williams' and appeared to have the wrong address.
He'd carried a black attache case with him; and he used it to, 'eat up' time by pretending to check his records and such. In no way did this fellow alarm the homeowner; and I found myself having to credit him with playing a much better than average game! I notified the store that I'd been followed and gave them the make, model, and license plate on his vehicle. As things turned out he is a relative of one of the other large jewelry store owners in our county and had, apparently, mistaken me for the owner of the store I'd just left. (We dress similar and look very much alike.)
Naturally, I was angry with the guy; he'd given me a few, 'bad moments'. At the time this incident happened the husband and wife owners of another local jewelry store had been attacked and held hostage while they were sitting at home. The wife was held for ransom while the husband was required to return to the store with one of the robbers and help him to 'rob the place blind' - Which these guys did! Some months later they did get caught; and, lo and behold, one of them turned out to be a wanted prison escapee AND a convicted double murderer!
As for the jewelry guys who followed me that day? They were just overzealous competitors. (I think!) Realistically, though, I have no idea what they might have done with a knowledge of exactly where I lived? A judicious phone call, however, got them to completely cut it out. All of which underscores the fact that - if you're even a reasonably cautious person - without electronic assistance, successful single vehicle surveillance is extremely difficult to do. Chances are in your favor that the other guy is going to get, both, himself and his vehicle noticed.
- tiger-26 likes this
Posted 10 August 2013 - 03:21 PM
Posted 11 September 2013 - 10:47 AM
Posted 12 September 2013 - 09:52 AM
1) Mother-in-law was 'dating' a guy who feds were investigating and ultimately got on tax evasion. Oblivious woman that she was, she didn't know anything was wrong at the time. (The booze might have had something to do with that but she just celebrated her 7th birthday with Bob and Bill.) Suffering from depression her resident head shrinker said she should take time while driving around to stop and look at things she found pretty. 70 MPH down a TX freeway and suddenly slams the skids and pulls over, awww pretty flowers... And a car with two pissed off feds speeds by... When they finally came to make their arrest they asked her if she was told by the 'boy' (to use man would be insulting to the rest of us) to take countermeasures for being followed. She didn't have a clue. They then proceeded to tell her about the little boy in the restaurant she had been playing peek-a-boo with a week prior. She had no clue.
Because of this, whenever we make wrong turns and end up traveling in circles looking for somewhere (happening a lot right now since I just moved and am way to stubborn to use a nav system) we make cracks about the feds that can't follow that.
2) Living in northern California at the time. Parks and Recs in our area just put in a new spur to the Sacramento and American River trails that ended about 300 yards from our house. Awesome right!?!? Wife was walking dog on the trail path almost everyday, taking her different ways once she got off the final spur to our place but always had about 1/2 mile of trail she had to walk to make it back to the house. Insert suspicious random dude here. As she was walking home (I made her sit down and read Gift of Fear) she pays a little better attention than your average Joe. Notices idiot keep about 150 yards between them where possible but is pretty much keeping her in sight and sitting down in any of the open stretches but right there when she got into some of the more enclosed areas. She called me. Directions were to hook ass the last tenth of a mile and get po po on the phone. 911 dispatch was a pleasant conversation and she made it plenty loud enough that several neighbors came out to see who she was yelling directions to the street at. Idiot disappeared but we never faulted her for that gut feeling.
So to the OP, no you're totally normal. Just more aware than the sheep.
- DeathwatchDoc likes this
Do the right thing, even when no one is looking.
Posted 12 September 2013 - 10:55 AM
Posted 02 October 2013 - 11:44 AM
Posted 24 October 2013 - 10:44 AM
artwork courtesy of a good friend on the forums!
Posted 05 November 2013 - 11:16 PM
... Next I stepped out of the vehicle, checked myself over, and waited to see if the following vehicle had, 'taken the bait'. Sure enough! A few seconds later along it comes. At the last second the driver saw me standing right there by the side of the road with my body partially protected by my own vehicle. If he knew us he, also, knew that I was armed. (I can still see the surprised, perhaps even frightened, look on his face as he drove past!) I'd placed him at a distinct disadvantage; and, to his credit, he realized it....
I'm not picking at you, but I think this is a terrible idea. Not because I feel like you did anything wrong. But some people in the judicial system might. Remember George Zimmerman? From what evidence I've seen he had no other choice but to stop Trayvon from attacking him. But the reason he was attacked is because he followed T. Getting out of the car and being ready for the fight is great... but what happens to you after you shoot your would be attacker down? You'd have a lot of 'splaining to do. Getting out of the car when you don't have to can put a spotlight on you that you neither deserve or want.
Not to mention what happens if it doesn't go your way? Tactics, strategy, skill, equipment, and smarts only go so far regardless of who you are. Once again I'm not picking at what you did. I just believe that in our ever changing world we have to protect ourselves in more ways than one.
- AaronK and Davis like this
Posted 14 January 2014 - 06:23 AM
A friend of mine and I were just discussing the issue of OPSEC earlier today. A lot of commanders/operations officers put it on the intel officer in a battalion but it's really an operational task. It's not some magical saran wrap that you cover an overstacked plate with to keep out the flies and roaches. It is and should be something that's worked into the entire operation - like a defense in depth.
As to what technique you use - NOTHING you do can address every situation. I guess I would say that you've just got to be aware and judge the potential threat. I don't have a twitter account; my location isn't filled into my facebook; and "location services" is turned off on my phone. Nevertheless, I'm sure that if someone really wanted to it wouldn't be that difficult to figure out. But I try to minimize the amount of attention I invite. The only time I've been followed was on foot, at night, on an Iraqi army FOB and my solution at the time was to get back to my team mates as directly as possible without seeming alarmed. It amounted to nothing, but who knows.
Edited by tiger-26, 14 January 2014 - 06:31 AM.
- Davis likes this
Spartan-2, Vigilant-3A, Gimlet-2A, Hammer-5, Tiger-26
"They call me, El Rubio."
Posted 14 January 2014 - 07:02 AM
- DeathwatchDoc, mike2468 and Beaucoup VC like this
"I may walk among the sheep...but make no mistake, I am the sheepdog."
Posted 15 January 2014 - 12:30 AM
Strive to be a leader of Character, Competence, and Courage
Posted 15 January 2014 - 08:57 PM
I cannot stress situational awareness enough. There are too many whackos and criminal knuckleheads in our society to be incognizant of during a casual commute back home. I also take a few different routes home after work. I'll occasionally make a wrong turn if I suspect an asshat following me. But be careful not to make a wrong turn into an unknown area like cul de sacs, alleys, and private property.
- tiger-26 likes this
Posted 21 March 2014 - 01:52 PM
Even if the world were to laugh in my face and call me paranoid it wouldn't change a thing about the way I operate. My gut instinct has kept me safe more than once and I expect it to continue doing so.
I strongly 2nd this, I also had a recent adrenaline pumping misfire.
We live in a back section, and I always leave before my wife, I am always concious of locking her in when I leave, and she always rags me for it, saying "I'll be fine I'm leaving soon" which I duly ignore.
As I drove out on this particular morning, I saw a car about 5 houses down, it was 1 up and running, dude sitting in it was staring me down, I didn't think too much of it as we have some local shops at the end of our street and people are always stopping and going etc, but as I was turning out of our street, I see same car all of a sudden take of hot and fly into my driveway, fortunately our block is small, I buried it around the next to left turns and came back to our section of the street, only to find that he had just driven a bit to far up our drive whilst making a U turn, and was now parked by the shops and walking his way over the street to the convinience store.
My point is that I am not at all embarrased by my reaction, because things could have unfolded in an entirely different way!
Posted 20 October 2014 - 05:42 PM
It is good to be aware of the vehicles around you. I have about 5 different routes I can take home from work that all take about the same amount of time. I pick a random one each day (though I usually take the same one TO work each day, and really should vary it).
One thing that I thought of recently...if you enter your neighborhood off a main thoroughfare and make wrong turns because you suspect someone is tailing you, you're too late. You need to be aware of the tail and not turn into your neighborhood at all. Especially if you don't park in a garage. Too easy for an actual tail to just locate your vehicle after they've "given up".
Posted 05 November 2014 - 03:33 PM
Just poking around today and thought I'd share this article I read a while ago. It's not bad. To the original question - wrong turns on purpose - that's considered a very aggressive countersurveillance technique. Using it should be for a specific purpose and to achieve a specific result.
Spartan-2, Vigilant-3A, Gimlet-2A, Hammer-5, Tiger-26
"They call me, El Rubio."
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