Looter and scavengers...today

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by dragonfly, Jan 31, 2010.

  1. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    I got a call today, and was honestly upset by what I was told.
    It seems that there are a number of "people" ( I'll be polite!), that are right now, scavenging, looting, burglarizing, and stealing everything that isn't nailed down.
    The individuals that are doing this are my "so-called" "NEIGHBORS".
    Some live within a scant few miles distance from me.
    Some have "found" properties that "they claim" are 'abandoned', due to no fresh tire tracks aroun in the mud....So, these "wonderful" individuals, kick in doors, break windows, etc, etc....and steal everything they find in a persons trailer or home. Some have even started to steal the wood off of buildings, the doors, and even the windows, frames and all!
    I was even given a partial list of what my guy has seen taken today:
    Knives, cans of ammo: .22lr and .308, binoculars , batteries, solar panels, water tanks and drums, and at one point, several tried to dig up and remove a "septic tank"...Well heads, and pipes of all types and sizes....
    Any "abandoned" vehicles are shot full of holes, and the tires/wheels taken, and the batteries, and cables.....
    Can you even imagine such a thing?
    One guy is trying to take/"steal", a 22 ft travel trailer, as soon as he finds the tires and rims to fit it...
    Another is looking for someone to pull a 40 ft semi-trailer away from someone's lot, and move it to theirs!
    6 ft. Chainlink and multi-stranded barbed wire fences are being stolen in broad daylight now, and even the "t" posts are being pulled and removed!
    It's like a full moon, and ALL the loons are on the loose!
    Now for the GOOD news:
    It's going to rain for a week up there, and with all that mud, it stops all this insanity, until it dries up once more.....
    Then.....I dont know what will happen come spring/March.
    I know I have to get up to my place and begin to put in some safeguards, and so forth....
    Locals have been paying attention to youtube's great videos on lockpicking, so now we have a "new breed of losers" to deal with....
    About the ONLY way I see to put an end to this, at least as far as my property, is to keep a presence there at all times, 24/7...
    Not an easy task with only 1 person available.....
    Now, IF this is what we are seeing already, at this point, I am not at all happy with what we can expect, if anything dramatic takes place.
    I am going to buy a lot of 30-55 gallon poly drums and do some serious burying of items, just as soon as the weather clears....
    If they can't see it, they won't be able to steal it!
    Any thoughts on security measures,....are gratefully welcomed!
  2. Seawolf1090

    Seawolf1090 Retired Curmudgeonly IT Monkey Founding Member

    Sounds like y'all need to round up a 'posse' of good ol' boys and wait for the barstids - when they show up, introduce them to the concept of the ol' "GI Blanket Party", then leave them naked in the woods - DEEP inthe woods. This is theft on an increasing scale. Needs to be nipped dang quick, violently in necessary. [beat]
    tonid likes this.
  3. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Sounds like Cosby, Tennessee.
  4. BAT1

    BAT1 Cowboys know no fear

    Stinking thieves! Put em in those barrels.
  5. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Get set up to raise pigs.
    Ken_C likes this.
  6. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Not much you can do until you are on the property, like you said. The REAL problem is the fact that these idiots can run around taking whatever they want without repercussion, and they know it.

    The only thing I can see you being able to do to guard this place within cost range, is to get as many guard dogs as you can and fence off your immediate area where you store your items. Even this is costly, as the animals cost money, food costs money, fence and materials cost money, labor takes time, training dogs takes time. It's just a damned mess. Then you have to consider the possibility that these miscreants will kill the animals. Not good.

    I really hope that you can keep a presence out there long enough to deter any of these bandits.

    Alternative 1: make your place as empty as you can, do like you said: "bury the rest". Leave nothing for them to take.
  7. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    I think it just got MUCH worse.....
    My "caretaker" is evidently directly or indirectly involved with these jerks!
    He's only been there since September of last year, but seems to have taken a liking to the locals that are doing whatever they like ....
    He called to let me know about this great new knife "he found"...?
    Oh boy!
    Then in his second statement, he has a couple ammo cans of .22 lr's and .308 ammo also...He JUST happened to come across recently, out in the middle of nowhere, on no one's property, and not buried!
    Ok, then...
    I have to get a transmission repaired this week, get the stupid emission inspection and get new tags issued...Then I have to go up there, and do something...Question is what to do, when, how, and where to bury the remains?
    I am not a nice person, when it comes to that sort of thing.
    Patience and politeness in this instance, has just been removed from my vocabulary!
    I have 1 of 2 options here...
    Notify the Local sheriff's office, or, on a personal and intimate level, take the situation into my own control.....
  8. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    You are going to have to do this tactfully since he knows where all of your stuff is. If you think he is worth saving, and have an investment in him, I would have a long heart to heart with him, letting him know your feelings on the matter. If not, send him packing. If you decide to cut him loose, I would wait until you have a replacement for him, or until you are ready to stay there 24/7. Good luck.
  9. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    Yeah, it could turn into a real nightmare at this point...
    Even "IF" he were to vacate the premises, he'd never leave the area....
    That is something I have taken into consideration.
    He knows too much, the plans, layout of the site, and what's there now....
    But, tonight he made the mistake of essentially calling me a liar, it was not the first time he has done that. I am working on getting up there within the next 2 weeks...Things have to change, and either he understands his responsibilities there, or I have to make some drastic changes, fast!
  10. OzarkSaints

    OzarkSaints Monkey++

    dragonfly....I mean this with all due respect and sincerity.....but with the numerous and major problems you seem to encounter at your land, I would be severely hard pressed to stay there and have that be my 'retreat'....this many problems during civilized peace time, would be greatly multiplied during bad times.....I understand standing your ground...now that I have a young 18 minth old daughter, I am just STARTING to get in thru my hard head that sometimes it is actually better to walk away before the house burns down with you in it......look at it this way; would ya hesitate to move away from Detroit if that happened to be where ya had settled down at and then the place started turning to hell around ya?

    seriously, best of luck to ya bud....hope something gets worked out for ya...
  11. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    I hear ya!
    I think it's all due to the lack of decent people in the area....
    Or, at least someone that they know not to mess with.
    Problem is, one person cannot stop what a dozen are doing, not alone anyway....I'm looking for another person or a couple right now, to go up, and take his place, (without him realizing it!) That's he best and easiest thing I can do for now....I am contemplating putting the place on the market, and possibly even trade it for another site.....( that would solve a lot)
    It's a gamble at this time.
  12. pcc

    pcc Monkey+

    What do you know about the local police/sheriff? This suggestion is based on them having a good reputation, if not [dunno].

    1st I'd call them just to see if they are aware of the problem. All you have to do is say that a fellow property owner told you about the looting and you were wondering if they had made any arrest. If they weren't aware of it that should get them interested in doing a little investigating.

    At this point I'd also be concerned that your caretaker is possibly storing stolen goods for other members of the "gang". Any future visit would be unannounced so he doesn't have time to hide anything.
  13. Big Kahuna

    Big Kahuna Monkey++

    Been There Done That

    Dragonfly, I grew up near the area of your retreat. From my perspective, the greatest threat to survival is people. The human animal is far more dangerous than any natural disaster. It's bad now, but what's going to happen when the infrastructure fails in the Valley? Huge hoards of people will move north, on foot if necessary. They'll strip the land bare like locusts.

    I chose to relocate to Alaska, but if I were to stay in Arizona, I think I would go to the extreme eastern part of the state near Eager, or even over into New Mexico. Just my opinion.
  14. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    "Moonshine Capital of the World"...Yep, I've spent some time there...almost moved to Cobbly Nob...Cosby can be rough.
  15. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Great input from everybody. I agree that this place sounds like more of a mess than a blessing.
  16. NVBeav

    NVBeav Monkey+++

    Actually, it doesn't sound like anywhere is going to be good with people like that everywhere you turn. It's not just Arizona.

  17. fortunateson

    fortunateson I hate Illinois Nazis!

    Sorry to hear it.
    I have to say, that's the reason I've been so hesitant in purchasing retreat land. Some parts of the backwoods are worse than cities. Plenty of backwoods slums with people who've lived off the dole their whole lives.

    If it ever goes forward, I'm looking at purchasing some land and putting a trailer in a nearby self storage facility. Supplies will be there too or maybe in a BURIED and HIDDEN bunker on the property. Retreat will mean having to stop first at the storage to pick everything up. I can't ever see leaving a place vacant.

    Maybe you can get a tenant in there to take care and keep an eye on the place. Make sure there's extra room for your family when you retreat. Then you'd have to have your tenant as part of your survival group.

    Best wishes.
  18. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    I just talked with a man and his wife this evening, located in Montana....
    They bought their place about 4 years ago, and the town where they live can no longer afford the 1 horse! (RE:1 horse towns...)
    In fact there's no work at all now, and they are about to default on their mortgage...an 80+ year old house, which they had to put a lot into to make it livable...lots of upgrades like: replacing lath and stucco walls, replacing the old 2 bare wire electrical system.....basic stuff....Now he's delivering newspapers, early in the morning...trouble is, there's ONLY 150 people that get the paper there, and that newspaper is about to go under!
    They also have an hours drive to get to a really bigger town...

    I think it's bad, but from what I have been hearing on the blogs, forum's, and from emails: I have it easy!
    I called people I know in several areas, all around Arizona....seems it's pretty much the same old thing, everywhere here.
    Something else I have discovered.....(been told)
    Those that live out in rural areas, and have farms or ranches, are doing a lot better than most, as they are pretty much self-sustaining.....And the few that move into those areas (as of recently) are not easily acceped into the fold as it were!
    As more and more people decide to leave the cities and go rural, they have a detrimental effect on those that live there, and have done so, for generations in some cases. I can imagine, when and "IF" the schumer hits the fan, the resulting migration would be horrific.

    One person likened it in an email to me as: a hoarde of locust's, stripping the land as they pass thru. ( yeah, I could believe that!)
    Another email said I needed to abandon my land, regardless of the loss, to cut my losses! ( sure lose $4,000 I already have invested in the land alone!)
    I figure what I have is, a problem on my hands, that in time will be resolved, maybe sooner, but not too much later....
    But to throw in the towel and let those cretin's win...is not any option I can consider.

    Now, I have had at least 4 people tell me to just stay in the place I live now, (north Phoenix) and wait it out!
    Those people are "bugging-in", and 2 of them have homes, 2 live in apartments.....Not very sound advice on their parts I'm afraid.
    The areas in which they live are already violence prone, with street gangs, drug dealers, and ineffectual police departments.....

    I think I'll take my chances up on my northern site, where I have tree cover, in the middle of nowhere, no one wants to go there due to the lack of water, electricity, and nearly everything else! ( not much to steal,... anymore!)
    I may have it difficult up there with the current water situation, and nothing built yet, to store any supplies or shelters for much....
    But, I figure it has to be safer and a lot more secure with the distance's from any major roads and big towns nearby....
    It's a gamble I have to take....

    The flip side is: to remain here, 75-100 feet from one of the biggest highway's in Arizona, on the western "approach" side to an airport, and surrounded by 90+ illegal alien families......
    The people here are already "unstable" on a good day!
    I have been witness to their reaction when the electricity went down 2 separate times, for 4 days each!
    That was U G L Y !
    I have been told it's time to leave Arizona, as it will be one of the first states to "collapse", and go under Martial Law......
    Maybe, maybe it won't......But, considering the amount of people here that are armed to the eyeballs....I would NOT want to be where I am today!
    Mobile homes do NOT even slow projectiles down!
    Up north, at least I can disappear, and not be seen....Here, I may as well be wearing hot pink, and waving my arms up and down, like a big bird trying to take off! "IF" I lose a trailer here, it's no big deal, it has served it's purpose, kept the rain and wind out! Kept me in the shade since 1996....!
    So, I'll be tickled to leave this hotbed, and relocate to another insane asylum, asap!
    At least up there I can "defend myself and my property".
    Maybe, but then again, maybe I have lost what little brain cells I had!
    Hard to say anymore!
  19. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    IS it basicly just 'abandoned' properties that are being hit or is it anyplace that someone isnt at that day? Im not condoneing it reguardless but I would say it would be an important distinction in considering how good of an area it would be for a retreat. If they are hitting strictly places that are grown over and seem to be legitimatly abandoned then while it isnt a great thing it wouldnt speak as badly for the area as if the places are being hit while left empty just for the day while folks are at work or. If its only abandoned places you may also be able to protect your place somewhat by just makeing sure you get out there a couple times a month and keep it maintained so its clear that it isnt abandoned.

    I have known plenty of folks who were generaly honest folks and wouldnt even consider breaking into a persons house or stealing BUT if they see stuff laying around that seems to be abandoned (say camping gear untouched for days at a campgrounds, fishing pole on the bank with no owner around for hours, etc.) then they would likely pick it up and claim it. So simply makeing it clear by maintaining it may well serve to 'keep honest folks honest'. If they are breaking into places that are clearly weekend spots, hunting cabins, etc that are NOT abandoned but just unoccupied at the moment then nothing is likely to be safe there even if you are there '24/7' since you would still most likely have to work, go to the store, etc and the places unattended for long periods will empty out soon and then the ones with folks at work come next.
  20. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    Good point!
    Honestly, I think the places have been left for many months, un-occupied, but I'm not certain.....
    I am hoping that this is indeed the case.
    It does seem there were a lot of "places" left intact, but for the most part "abandoned" following Y2K.
    Most have weeds, no paths from tires or people going in or out, some have fences that have fallen down, some by the open range cattle, some by wind.
    It's unclear what they are referring to, until I get up there. I do know I can find the owners of any property up there on the tax map for the county, and we had even contacted one person that had left his place about 7 years ago....He authorized us to remove some old telephone poles along his property's border, that were rolling around in flood waters and blocking the adjacent roads....We told him the problem and asked if we could take them away and put them to use as fence/gate posts.
    He was quite amiable to the idea, and offered to give us several large coils of old rusted barbed wire he had stored near what used to be his entrance road.
    We have decided to let those be....too heavy, and too rusted today to be of any real use.
    Most people I have met on my 2 trips up there were very amiable and several owned their own business'.
    I do know the town is a shambles by all acounts. The census back in 2000 showed only 457 population, 139 homes, and a lot of shuttered old business'. ( it's gone downhill since then!)
    I don't know the people well, have had little contact, but can see the need to be seen and known as a property owner in the area. Many seem to be "cliquish" as far as newcomers to the area.
    It's become a problem, and I have to get up there ( when the rain quits and the mud dries up!) so I can let others in the area know what I'm about...Not just "another nut" that will stay until the first winter!
    I have made some calls and I am about to buy some chickens from one couple up there that need financial help, ( both lost their jobs) and I want the chickens anyway!
    Maybe by doing business in the area, and helping the locals as well as myself in the process it will all eventually pan out!
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