Quantcast

How would you handle this as you run an Inn and open the door to strangers daily?

INNspiring.com | Innkeeper Forum & Innkeeping Resources

Help Support INNspiring.com | Innkeeper Forum & Innkeeping Resources:

JunieBJones (JBJ)

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
3,893
Reaction score
0
How would YOU handle this situation? What do you have in place in case of this sort of emergency? If someone knocks on our door we open it right? Having the door access code helps prevent someone from just wandering in. I have already had census takers knock on the door - they could have been anyone really. What would you do? Are we sitting ducks?
Man charged with trying to abduct Roanoke County woman for ransom By Amanda Codispoti[/h4]
A man charged in an attempted home invasion earlier this month in Roanoke County had plans to kidnap the female resident and possibly hold her for ransom, according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court in Roanoke.

Mohammed Guhad is now facing a federal charge of conspiring to kidnap and hold a person for ransom.

He was arrested by county police April 6, after he and two other men went to a house on Trelawny Trail and knocked on the door, according to the affidavit filed in U.S. District Court.
When a woman answered, one of the men said something about a survey for the Red Cross, the woman told police.
She tried to shut the door, but one of the men used his arm to stop the door from closing. The woman screamed for help, and the man removed his arm. She was able to close and lock the door and then called 911.
Police responding to the call saw the suspects' vehicle leaving the scene and stopped it. According to the affidavit and an earlier Roanoke County search warrant, police found rope, binoculars, handcuffs, a BB gun and a tire iron in the car.
Police arrested Guhad of Roanoke, Joshua Kasongo of Roanoke and Luke Elbino of Vinton. Each was charged with entering a house with intent to commit murder, rape, robbery or arson, according to court records. http://www.roanoke.com/news/breaking/wb/203045
 

Morticia

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
17,287
Reaction score
151
It does have to cross your mind at some point, doesn't it?
 

YellowSocks

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
2,179
Reaction score
13
I figure my risk is about the same, B&B or no. Actually, I think we're slightly less at risk, since as a business there could be guests and others about, while a woman at home alone is way more vulnerable.
=)
Kk.
 

Copperhead

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 24, 2008
Messages
5,969
Reaction score
0
Yep. And after reading this, I will remind DH to lock the door behind him no matter how long he plans to stay inside...
Early this week we had no guests and DH was working on the yard and had come in to use the facilities. I was in the kitchen up to my neck in making strawberry jam. He left the door unlocked because he was going right back outside...We live in a rural / residentual area, not heavily traveled so very slim chance of a walk-in than some of you.
Well just as DH was coming out of the bathroom, a lady came in and asked for the owner (guess DH didn't look like the owner) when he fessed up, the lady showed her offical cencus badge and said Is this a home or a business? Being unsure, why would she have just opened the door and come in???
 

gillumhouse

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
15,522
Reaction score
85
I had never thought about such things happening to me. We never locked doors when I was growing up and DH used to get on my back about locking doors all the time when we lived in the Burbs. It just was not in our necessary action list in WV. I know crap happens everywhere but I guess I am still in the "not to me" stage. One of the "perks" of being a medium-size fish in the puddle called Shinnston. The garbage happens in the big cities....
 

Samster

Well-known member
Joined
May 30, 2008
Messages
6,475
Reaction score
14
Location
South Carolina
I had never thought about such things happening to me. We never locked doors when I was growing up and DH used to get on my back about locking doors all the time when we lived in the Burbs. It just was not in our necessary action list in WV. I know crap happens everywhere but I guess I am still in the "not to me" stage. One of the "perks" of being a medium-size fish in the puddle called Shinnston. The garbage happens in the big cities.....
Actually it happens everywhere, unfortunately.
We all need to use common sense and practice safety measures. Ya never know....
 

scrambled_eggs

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 7, 2008
Messages
612
Reaction score
0
I just had the census lady come by today with her hand held computer entering stuff in. This is the first time I have ever seen a census person. She looked pretty officaial with her name tag and she handed out an informational flyer. She stood on the porch to get her coordinates on the address of the house and asked me if the place was a single family home or not. I just told her I rented out rooms to tourists and lived here as well. I get a lot of people coming up to the door trying the knob to get in without knocking or ringing the bell first. One day the door wasn't shut all the way and this happened. The stranger came all the back to my bedroom looking for me. Kind of startling. Thankfully the doorknob is a permananetly locked one so guests can only enter with their room key but for that to work the door has to be shut!
 

YellowSocks

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
2,179
Reaction score
13
Yep. And after reading this, I will remind DH to lock the door behind him no matter how long he plans to stay inside...
Early this week we had no guests and DH was working on the yard and had come in to use the facilities. I was in the kitchen up to my neck in making strawberry jam. He left the door unlocked because he was going right back outside...We live in a rural / residentual area, not heavily traveled so very slim chance of a walk-in than some of you.
Well just as DH was coming out of the bathroom, a lady came in and asked for the owner (guess DH didn't look like the owner) when he fessed up, the lady showed her offical cencus badge and said Is this a home or a business? Being unsure, why would she have just opened the door and come in???.
Copperhead said:
the lady showed her offical cencus badge and said Is this a home or a business? Being unsure, why would she have just opened the door and come in???
Yes, we had a census guy come by, asked us the same thing, to which we answered, "Yes."
After some discussion where he seemed quite confused, we said just put us as a single family, for Pete's sake. He informed us it was uploading to the satellites, then finally he meandered away.
It's sure a lot different than 20 years ago!
=)
Kk.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
3,893
Reaction score
0
So far no one has answered the question I asked.
Most said it wouldn't happen to them, so in other words you are completely unprepared.
No one thinks it will happen to them when it happens. Rapes, murders, robberies happen everywhere, not just big cities.
I disagree with a woman at home being more vulnerable, she would most likely not answer the door to two men standing on her porch, where WE WOULD. WE DO. WE HAVE DONE.
Remember it is the element of surprise that crims count on. It is the same reason a crim can get a shot off nanoseconds before a police officer can, every time.
 

YellowSocks

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
2,179
Reaction score
13
I would handle it like she did, I guess.
I would have opened the door. Even before I had a B&B I would open the door.
My cell phone's always in my pocket, and the home phone often is, too. Given 2 seconds I'd dial 911.
It might be different if I were elderly and frail, or petite. I'm neither. So even when I lived in the big city I generally would open the door, although there I might at least ask who they were first. Maybe. Or not...
I guess my theory of life, for any lurking danger whether home invasion, swine flu, child molesters, or being run over by a semi is to take reasonable precautions and then get on with my life. I have too many other things to worry about!
=)
Kk.
 

seashanty

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jun 2, 2008
Messages
5,694
Reaction score
16
honestly? a baseball bat. and little pepper sprays ... one on my key ring and one in my pocket, one beside the bed.
 

MooseTrax

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 27, 2009
Messages
270
Reaction score
0
what does it say about me that i don't want to think along these lines? usually there are 2 of us here but what good would that do? an extra hostage? would my deaf dog even hear? research shows that if you have thought things through, read the pamphlet in the seatback pocket, etc, that you have a better chance of survival. still, if you are the kind of person who freezes or goes blank, all the reading and planning won't do you a lick of good.
interestingly enough, the ads that show up on this topic are about baby monitors. how did that algorithm work? all of them are about protecting your child from a variety if harms.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
3,893
Reaction score
0
Oh brother! What did I do. I just looked at the ads too! From the title of the ads I guess it is good someone is watching out for us. ha ha
I think we are all the same - we don't think about it. Noone wants to live in a place that you have to watch your back all the time like the guest going up and down the stairs every 30 minutes to 'check on his car' that blew me away.
We leave keys in cars here and running. I know it is hard to believe. I laughed as there is a local insurance agent in town who has a nice bike out front "FOR SALE" - I told DH "When I grew up I had my bike chained to the back of my house AND the front tire removed and it was stolen." Every bike I ever had was stolen growing up (and remember they weren't made in china sold at wal mart, to buy a bike in those days meant a lot of hard work to save for it! This guy has it out front with a sign for sale. Unbelievable. Over night it is still out there.
 

Morticia

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
17,287
Reaction score
151
Oh brother! What did I do. I just looked at the ads too! From the title of the ads I guess it is good someone is watching out for us. ha ha
I think we are all the same - we don't think about it. Noone wants to live in a place that you have to watch your back all the time like the guest going up and down the stairs every 30 minutes to 'check on his car' that blew me away.
We leave keys in cars here and running. I know it is hard to believe. I laughed as there is a local insurance agent in town who has a nice bike out front "FOR SALE" - I told DH "When I grew up I had my bike chained to the back of my house AND the front tire removed and it was stolen." Every bike I ever had was stolen growing up (and remember they weren't made in china sold at wal mart, to buy a bike in those days meant a lot of hard work to save for it! This guy has it out front with a sign for sale. Unbelievable. Over night it is still out there..
We've had guests ask if the windows overlook the parking so they can keep an eye on their cars.
My grandson's bike was stolen from right outside their door. He got the next one from a yard sale. I don't know how much it bothers him, but it bothers me. For Pete's sake, it was a 5 year old's bike, not some flashy thing you could make money on.
Funny story...my son had his skateboard stolen when he was at the fair. All the kids just left their bikes and skateboards along the fence, his was gone when they came back. These are pretty personal things and hard to hide if you've stolen it, especially in a small town. Anyhoo, months went by and one day I was doing my mile loop around the neighborhood and there, in the middle of the sidewalk I was walking on, was the skateboard. I picked it up, flipped it over and sure enough, it was my son's. I rode it home.
 

gillumhouse

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
15,522
Reaction score
85
To answer your initial question I would try to slam the door, if unsuccessful - go for the jewels any way I could with anything I could.
What was not answered in the article is was her house in an upscale neighborhood? Is her family known to have money? Everyone knows I do not have money and there really is no one who would get excited about paying a ransom - well perhaps my son - but none of the kids have any big money either.
 

ginocat

Well-known member
Joined
May 30, 2008
Messages
397
Reaction score
0
To answer your initial question I would try to slam the door, if unsuccessful - go for the jewels any way I could with anything I could.
What was not answered in the article is was her house in an upscale neighborhood? Is her family known to have money? Everyone knows I do not have money and there really is no one who would get excited about paying a ransom - well perhaps my son - but none of the kids have any big money either..
Anything can happen. The thing is, if you're going to be in this kind of business you can't worry about opening your door to a knock.
Most of our guests are strangers - they could be murderers, rapists, thieves. We could drive ourselves crazy thinking about this stuff.
One thing that's important and I know not all of you do it - keep your doors locked!! I say this for insurance purposes. If your doors are unlocked and you have a theft you are going to be in trouble with the insurance company and the police.
 

birdwatcher

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 22, 2009
Messages
1,085
Reaction score
0
We do not lock the doors here, and truthfully we are so 'Out there" and small and if it should happen it would be rare indeed. Our little town doesnt even have a store, a gas station or anything of the sort, there are only two ways to get into town and out.
Like someone said, we allow total strangers into our homes to spend the night, what if one of those strangers gets up in the middle of the night in our "locked" houses and rapes and pilages and steals everything there is in the house and dissapears before dawn? Are we ultimately responsible because we let "strangers" stay in our homes? Its not like we do a background check on every guest is there? The likelihood of this happening is very slim though. Good for the person that slammed the door.
 

ginocat

Well-known member
Joined
May 30, 2008
Messages
397
Reaction score
0
We do not lock the doors here, and truthfully we are so 'Out there" and small and if it should happen it would be rare indeed. Our little town doesnt even have a store, a gas station or anything of the sort, there are only two ways to get into town and out.
Like someone said, we allow total strangers into our homes to spend the night, what if one of those strangers gets up in the middle of the night in our "locked" houses and rapes and pilages and steals everything there is in the house and dissapears before dawn? Are we ultimately responsible because we let "strangers" stay in our homes? Its not like we do a background check on every guest is there? The likelihood of this happening is very slim though. Good for the person that slammed the door..
When I talk about keeping doors locked I'm talking about outside doors. I do not worry about guests being thieves or anything else. It's for insurance for us and our guests. I don't care if you're in the middle of a deserted island - if someone comes into your house and the doors aren't locked and something happens your insurance company will not cover you or your guests!
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
3,893
Reaction score
0
We do not lock the doors here, and truthfully we are so 'Out there" and small and if it should happen it would be rare indeed. Our little town doesnt even have a store, a gas station or anything of the sort, there are only two ways to get into town and out.
Like someone said, we allow total strangers into our homes to spend the night, what if one of those strangers gets up in the middle of the night in our "locked" houses and rapes and pilages and steals everything there is in the house and dissapears before dawn? Are we ultimately responsible because we let "strangers" stay in our homes? Its not like we do a background check on every guest is there? The likelihood of this happening is very slim though. Good for the person that slammed the door..
birdwatcher said:
Like someone said, we allow total strangers into our homes to spend the night, what if one of those strangers gets up in the middle of the night in our "locked" houses and rapes and pilages and steals everything there is in the house and dissapears before dawn? Are we ultimately responsible because we let "strangers" stay in our homes? Its not like we do a background check on every guest is there? The likelihood of this happening is very slim though. Good for the person that slammed the door.
We accept having strangers in our midst. But on the same token since you brought it up - we better all have good liability insurance in place!
I didn't post it but there was a B&B overseas where the husband came to the B&B and brutally killed the wife.
(I had people visit one of our guest rooms this morning. No harm of course, it was their parents/grandparents, but they didn't ask permission or anything and I hear a child running - 2 yr old which alerted me. We have a hole on the porch decking roped off and with a red warning cone as it is under repair. What did the kid do? He ran straight to the hole! Of course he would.)
We never know and just need to do what we do and never overlook a red flag or the hair on the back of our neck standing up response. I think most innkeepers are very intuitive people. We can read someone and know at least if something is not right. I have had it here a couple times. Not many, but I knew I had to lock my quarters and sleep with one eye open. We cannot be so naive to think B&B guests are 100% perfect people. But we can hope so!
 

birdwatcher

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 22, 2009
Messages
1,085
Reaction score
0
We do not lock the doors here, and truthfully we are so 'Out there" and small and if it should happen it would be rare indeed. Our little town doesnt even have a store, a gas station or anything of the sort, there are only two ways to get into town and out.
Like someone said, we allow total strangers into our homes to spend the night, what if one of those strangers gets up in the middle of the night in our "locked" houses and rapes and pilages and steals everything there is in the house and dissapears before dawn? Are we ultimately responsible because we let "strangers" stay in our homes? Its not like we do a background check on every guest is there? The likelihood of this happening is very slim though. Good for the person that slammed the door..
birdwatcher said:
Like someone said, we allow total strangers into our homes to spend the night, what if one of those strangers gets up in the middle of the night in our "locked" houses and rapes and pilages and steals everything there is in the house and dissapears before dawn? Are we ultimately responsible because we let "strangers" stay in our homes? Its not like we do a background check on every guest is there? The likelihood of this happening is very slim though. Good for the person that slammed the door.
We accept having strangers in our midst. But on the same token since you brought it up - we better all have good liability insurance in place!
I didn't post it but there was a B&B overseas where the husband came to the B&B and brutally killed the wife.
(I had people visit one of our guest rooms this morning. No harm of course, it was their parents/grandparents, but they didn't ask permission or anything and I hear a child running - 2 yr old which alerted me. We have a hole on the porch decking roped off and with a red warning cone as it is under repair. What did the kid do? He ran straight to the hole! Of course he would.)
We never know and just need to do what we do and never overlook a red flag or the hair on the back of our neck standing up response. I think most innkeepers are very intuitive people. We can read someone and know at least if something is not right. I have had it here a couple times. Not many, but I knew I had to lock my quarters and sleep with one eye open. We cannot be so naive to think B&B guests are 100% perfect people. But we can hope so!
.
You are so right Junie....I pray that I have ok guests, but no one really knows do they? I believe in intuition as well and you are right about that.
 
Top