Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Kicked Out of the Neighborhood

I was recently on the case of a professional insurance claimant (PIC) and was attempting to establish direct surveillance. His neighborhood had on-street parking but I wasn't sure if it was a good idea or not. So I canvassed the neighborhood and wasn't finding anything better. To make it worse there were multiple exits to this neighborhood and there just wasn't anywhere good to park that I was sure I wouldn't miss him or lose him when he went out.

I had already lost him once that day and had to look for him. Thankfully he was easy to find but I had rather not lose him again. So I decided to park just up the street on the side of the road. There were other cars parked on the street and so I thought I could get away with it.

I wasn't parked in front of anyone's house. I was between two houses and about 3 houses away. Normally I try to park 5 houses away but that wasn't possible in this case. I didn't hide myself right away and I'm glad I didn't.

I notified the police of my presence since it was a residential neighborhood. (Just for the record, this was a multiracial, working-class neighborhood.) Then I slid my seat back and just enjoyed the tinted windows in my car for a minute. From my position, none of the residents could see in through the front window so I opted not to put up my shades.

I was only there about 15 minutes when an unidentified male approximately in his 60's, not my claimant, started walking from his home across and down the street to my car. At times like this you can never be sure if the person is armed, has ill intentions or what they are thinking. I started to get nervous and rolled my window down and acknowledged him there.

He asked me what I was doing there and I gave him a pretext statement. He said it seemed suspicious to him that I was there and told me I "needed to leave." In this kind of instance it is always better to avoid conflict and so I told him I was just about to. He then turned to walk off and was greeted by his daughter who had just pulled up at his house. I overheard her ask him what he was doing (not who I was) and he told her he was asking me what I was doing here and then stated he didn't want me there.

I then pulled off and out of the neighborhood entirely. I took extra care in my parking for the remainder of that job. It was painstaking to even find anywhere else to go.

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