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Cory
 Cory
(@Cory)
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July 19, 2008 1:56 pm  

This morning at approx 4:30am 4 men in masks with guns followed 2 friends home from a beach bar. They were followed to their home in Mahogany welcome(5 minutes east of C-std). 2 of the men forced their way into my friends home. One had a .38 and another had an automatic weapon of some kind. Long story short, after my friends gave up the money, the brazen robbers decided to take the computers and electronics at which point my two friends proceeded to fight with the robbers. One friend got pistol whipped and 2 of the robbers got cut up bad. One of the robbers didnt know how to use his automatic gun and got stabbed in the gut. As of now, 4 suspects are in police custody and noone was killed, thank god. The robbers were teenagers with automatic weapons. WTF?? How long is this going to go on before the community bands together to stop this madness. Im moving here in a few weeks, do i really need to get viscious dogs, cameras and guns?

What can we all do to help this situation. We need to band together and do something.

This is madness....


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chefnoah
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July 19, 2008 2:20 pm  

I'd say be excited that they actually caught them. Also, to avoid something like this, don't stay out until 4:30 a.m.

Just my .02
Noah


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Sabrina
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July 19, 2008 2:25 pm  

Sorry to hear about your friends. It will be interesting to see if the robbers ever do any time for their crime - I'm amazed they were even caught. Fighting back obviously worked in this case, but another time it could get you killed. How does anyone know what to do in a situation like this?


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Yearasta
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July 19, 2008 2:34 pm  

I would say use common sense and be aware of your surroundings, watch where you walk at that time of the morn.


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antiqueone
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July 19, 2008 4:30 pm  

IN a paradise where there is near total anarchy, where the bad guys roam with (almost) complete immunity, it is wise to be able to protect yourself and your loved ones. There are too few police. The public won't turn in their brothers and cousins, Even if the perpetrators are caught, the judges let almost all of them go free. The second ammendment applies. Get a gun to protect your home. Work with me to extend the right to concealed carry of a weapon to Virgin Islanders as it has been to most of the states--not just business owners, but to all responsible citizens who are willing and able to accept the responsibility. This has been shown to be the ONLY effective way to reduce violent crime until the infrastructure can be healed.


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Neil
 Neil
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July 19, 2008 5:02 pm  

I'm glad this turned out safe for your friends. Scary scary stuff.

But... I'm sitting here thinking to myself:

a. WHAT possession in my house is worth getting shot or stabbed, or worth shooting or stabbing some stupid kid over?

b. Seems like every story I read about a late night robbery or drunk driving accident these days, no matter where it takes place, has the words "3 am" or "coming home from a bar" in it.


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Linda J
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July 19, 2008 5:28 pm  

I think Anarchy is a little strong a term for the conditions on STX.

What "beach bar" stays open until 4 am?


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DL
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July 19, 2008 5:29 pm  

I'm sorry about what happened to your friends. It's a shame how younger and younger the criminals are these days..... believe it or not a lot of these people have consciences and would be doing more productive things in society if there were more opportunities for Crucian youth. I'm not excusing what they did of course, just saying that there needs to be just as much attention on social development as there is on economic development in the Virgin Islands.

BTW, "Near total anarchy" my ass. Not even Haiti is in anarchy....


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Yearasta
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July 19, 2008 5:50 pm  

We stop and eat at Panchi's (sp?) in Gallow's Bay 4 and 5 am...it's my idea of waffle house on the way home after being out.


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antiqueone
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July 19, 2008 6:03 pm  

Let me ammend briefly and then I will bow out: NO possession in the house is worth getting shot or knifed over. Family and friends are another matter. Fact: the sound of a shotgun or even a pistol being cocked (before the bad guy actually gets in) scares off all but the most vicious invaders.

99.9% of self-defense firearms uses do not result in fatal shootings of criminals, an important factor ignored in certain "studies" that are used to claim that guns are more often misused than used for self-protection. Of incarcerated felons surveyed by the Department of Justice, 34% have been driven away, wounded, or captured by armed citizens; 40% have decided against committing crimes for fear their would-be victims were armed.

and ok, anarchy is too strong a word. But then, why does a senator get to shoot his son in the back with impunity? (Shades of Sen. Kennedy!) Why does the drug task force get shut down due to corruption? Why do others think that graft an corruption are a normal course of business? And finally, who is holding my rebate check?


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promoguy
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July 19, 2008 7:51 pm  

Anybody that points a gun or automatic weapon at anyone with the intent to commit robbery doesn't have a conscience at all.


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SailAway
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July 19, 2008 9:44 pm  

It may not be a lack of conscience in a majority of cases... it might be consciousness. Anyone who has worked with kids in the street can tell you that drugs can take over people's thought processes. Otherwise good kids under the influence of illegal substances can do terrible things. The good news is that intervention by someone with the right attitude and willingness to pay attention can sometimes make a dramatic difference.


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newarrival
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July 19, 2008 9:57 pm  

Has anyone heard of the ceasefire program in Chicago? It has been getting a lot of good press, as a program to stop the cycle of violence. The program employs reformed gang members and criminals who still have "street credibility" but who have renounced crime to intervene in the community and try to spread the anti-violence message. It is kind of hard to summarize and make it sound compelling, but the articles I have read sound great.

I wonder whether the program would have any chance of succeeding in St. Croix? Are there enough people who have gone from bad to good? This is a close-knit community, so I think the idea of using social pressure to stop violence might work here.

If anyone is interested, here is the web site. I would love to be part of the solution to stop the horrific violence there has been since we arrived (in April), and if there are rallies or town hall meetings, I would like to know about them.

http://www.ceasefirechicago.org/cpvp.shtml


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NormanPaperman
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July 19, 2008 10:06 pm  

Great idea.


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Juanita
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July 19, 2008 10:16 pm  

Anyone know the Governor? Send this to him. I think this sounds like something worth pursuing.


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Lizard
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July 20, 2008 12:56 am  

Robbery with automatic weapon, doesn't sound like a good kid gone bad or under the influence, from the original post this kid didn't know how to use it ( the weapon that is). The word "Evil" or "Evil-do-er" comes to mind. Lock them up for life and let them teach from behind "BARS".


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trw
 trw
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July 20, 2008 12:59 am  

thank you Lizard!!!!


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promoguy
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July 20, 2008 1:30 am  

For your comments and if you were a girl I would kiss you on your lizzard lips.

Bingo, you understand.


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trw
 trw
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July 20, 2008 1:49 am  

for too many years the bad guys on these islands have ruled the night,over the years i have worked with so many local women that will not go out after the sun has gone down because they are afraid,the only way they go out at night is when they are dropped off and picked up again at work by a family member,and if they drive themselves they won't even come to a full stop at red lights or stop signs they just kinda slow and go,and trust me i'm not exageratting they tell me things,part of the reason there is little parking in town close to restaurants is because the employees take those spots when downtown empties out at 5pm, at numerous restaurants i've worked at in both towns all emps leave at the same time,it's just a safety thing.it's just another one of the facts of life involved with living here.


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terry
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July 20, 2008 1:54 am  

Your friend had the right to stay out until 4:30 AM, but not very smart. It does seem that a large % of crimes occur late at night around bars or from bars. Good sense to stay away from possible trouble.

As far as the gun issue, I am 100% in favor. The only thing that would slow me down in using one against a criminal ( anything in my condo is worth more to me then their life, including my garbage) is the fear of retaliation from their family or criminal friends. Here in the states that does not seem to be a fear, and yes in the states I have a couple of pistols and a police riot gun with 00 buck. Got rid of the 44 Mag, would hate to have a bullet go through a criminal and go into a neighbors house.

I personally don't stay out very late, try to park in secure areas, don't leave a place drunk, and try to be very aware of my surroundings.


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trw
 trw
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July 20, 2008 2:24 am  

i've always thought it would be interesting to take out an ad in say soldier of fortune magazine or some other publication like that advertising free target practice down here,lol but i've been told that i should not think thoughts like that because i live in paradise,lol


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promoguy
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July 20, 2008 2:32 am  

forget about the thoughts, TRW. you shouldn't even put them on a forum. it's there for all to see when that sniper shows up.


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SailAway
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July 20, 2008 2:45 am  

Liz:

Interesting that we saw such different things in the same set of facts. The point that the kid fumbled with the weapon was precisely what left me thinking this was an amateur on one of, if not his first, forays into armed robbery.

I didn't mean to imply the kids should not get whatever the justice system doles out... the consequences of anyone's actions are still determined by their actions. I was only commenting on the assertion that the suspect had no conscience. The kind of person who isn't reacting to outside pressure, who internally is so "evil" that he or she will torture or kill a human being or animal just to watch them suffer, is extremely rare. Research is showing that the ones who are were severely warped by abuse within the home in childhood.

My dad was -- and still is -- a pretty hard line conservative who volunteered for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office as a posse member for many years and always supported strict penalties for violent behavior. But a few years before my mom died he and Mom participated in a church group that spent time with kids in the state's juvenile system. The kids were already behind bars for serious crimes. Mom, a lifelong schoolteacher, had always looked for the good in people. But it was really interesting to see how Dad was affected by these kids. He developed close friendships with some of them after he got to know them and understand that they were indeed "good kids gone bad", growing up in neighborhoods where drugs and gang violence were social norms that created intense pressure to adapt or suffer.

Dad still believes in strict law enforcement. But he has a very different attitude about early intervention to help kids find positive outlets and avoid being pulled into gang participation.

Again, the perpetrators of violent crime should get whatever the justice system administers... but in a place where there is little likelihood that any of these kids will spend any time at all behind "BARS" anyway, it seems to me there's a serious logical disconnect in depending on incarceration to change anything. There is not much chance they are going to jail in the first place, so the idea that "locking them up for life" is even possible... much less a cure... seems unrealistic to me.

I've never been one for saying "come to the VI's to change them", but I do believe that violent crime -- rooted in drugs and poverty -- is the single greatest challenge facing the VI's. If there is any one thing that needs a new approach, this is it. I definitely think that change has to come from some form of activism and not the jurisprudence system. I don't know about you, but I suspect the odds of winning the jumbo jackpot at the resort casino are better than the chances that the government is going to suddenly start pursuing, arresting, convicting and incarcerating every young person who commits a violent crime in the islands.

I don't know if Newarrival's suggestion will work. But I would say there's at least 75 years or so of evidence to the fact that the current approach hasn't. And I see no reason why that will suddenly change this year just because we want it to. You know the definition of "insanity", don't you?


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trw
 trw
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July 20, 2008 2:49 am  

oh promoguy i don't think i'd be the only target once people started to read this message board


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mrj1182
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July 20, 2008 3:21 am  

i'm on the gun wagon. not to hurt people, but b/c i consider one of the community who is well educated on gun use and knows how to use one in a home intrusion scenario. friends of ours in a nice neighborhood on the edge of a bad neighborhood were continuously getting their cars broken into, so the night after a robbery, all the neighbors hid with their rifles, and when they saw a car stop in front of a house and the occupants get out, they peppered the rear end of the car. needless to say, there was no retaliation, and no more robberies. if criminals are shown that the public will not stand for their antics anymore, they will stop. that's all their is to it. it's just a matter of getting enough of the community to band together and get the word out. i myself am moving down in a few weeks to stt and have been considering bringing my pistol with me. today's news helped me make my decision.


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