A young resident of Hancock Park was robbed at gunpoint late Tuesday evening, near 4th Street and Hudson Avenue, according to an alert sent out by the Hancock Park Homeowners Association, est. 1948. The teen was walking home from the bus with his brother at the time.
Resident Lauren Peng reported that her teenage son was robbed at gun point at 5:20 pm Tuesday near 4th and Hudson.
According to Terry Seagraves, SSA Security, the teens got off a bus and were walking home when they were approached by three Hispanic men who also appeared to be in their late teens or early twenties, all wearing hoodies. One suspect grabbed the teen’s backpack. When the teen tried to get the backpack back, another suspect took out a gun. The suspects fled the scene on foot and appeared to be without a car.
The teens ran home and their family called SSA, which arrived on the scene and turned the matter over to the LAPD.
One suspect was described as wearing grey hoodie with an orange backpack, the other a blue jacket. The family is looking for a black backpack with a white G on it. “We would love to get the books and homework back,” wrote Peng in an email to Cindy Chvatal-Keane, HPHOA’48 President.
SSA offered the following information to the Buzz to share with readers about personal safety.
Personal Awareness: Ways to Avoid Danger To modify your “personal internal alarm”:
- Trust yourself. Many times, your eyes, ears, nose, skin , and tongue will give clues indicating that something threatening is ahead. Another powerful indicator, widely known as a sixth sense, can also hint at danger. If something doesn’t seem right, it probably isn’t and don’t trust it.
- Be aware of your surroundings. No matter how safe you think a neighborhood might be, it’s still not a good idea to leave the front door open, your valuables in the car, your purse on top of an entry table, or to flaunt all of your expensive jewelry and other belongings. These actions simply provide temptation and opportunity for offenders,
- Pay attention to the people around you. This advice is part of both listening to your instincts and being aware of your surroundings. You can often sense peoples’ intentions just by the way they look at you. Heed warning signs.
- Act confident and focused. Just as you can sense people’s feelings, others can sense yours as well. Criminals look for people who are meek, mild, weak, unfocused, and distracted. Criminals are looking for easy pickings. They’re looking for someone who they can take by surprise and will likely not resist. Presenting yourself in an assertive manner. When walking down the street, make eye contact with people who look at you. This will throw them off guard and usually, they will seek other potential victims.
- React quickly to danger. Response time is critical. Since the offender is counting on a surprise ambush to carry out his crime, you need to use the same element of surprise to escape or counterattack. This could mean running toward lights and people, or it could mean screaming or making noise with whatever you have to get other people’s attention. If you’re grabbed by the wrist, try to juggle your hand so that you can pull it away in the area where the attacker’s fingers can open up or toward the thumbs, which is the weakest point of the hand. If escaping is not an option, a quick and efficient self-defense is key. If you’re just flailing about, you may be ineffectively exerting energy, and that will cause you to question what you’re doing. It is recommended striking only at vital targets, which are areas of the body where you can inflict the most pain and damage. This will likely make it easier to disable the offender and get away. Some vital targets include the top center of the skull, eyes, temples, ears, windpipe, knees, insteps, base of skull, and spine.
- Have an escape plan. Wherever you are or wherever you are going, know the layout of the place and visualize an escape route. Thinking this way is not being paranoid, it’s being cautious. If you’re at home, knowing where your power switch is, and knowing your way in the dark, can give you an advantage over intruders. If you’re outside, knowing the layout of the area, knowing where the less than good areas are, where populated streets and venues are all can help you to both prevent and escape an encounter with an attacker. If suspicious activity or this possible suspect is observed and you are a subscriber to SSA Security, contact your SSA SECURITY PATROL VEHICLE at the numbers you have and/or the L.A.P.D. 911 (emergency) or 877-ask-LAPD (877-275-5273) (non-emergency).
This story was updated with information from SLO Dave Cordova