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Old 08-08-2018, 05:56 PM
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Default It finally happened, 5-0 got called on me

Well it finally happened. I went out curbstrip hunting this afternoon and a guy walking his dogs confronted me, and called the cops. He started with, hey what gives you the right to dig up peoples yards? Do you have permission to dig holes everywhere? I replied in a very friendly manner, yes i do, i have a permit from the city and this is also public right of way. He was very angry with my reply. He started on about there have been 77 home breakins this year (not true at least in this neighborhood/ side of town). I also said I have permissiom from all my neighbors on this street to hunt thier yards. He said well I have never seen you before and we will see. I responded by introducing myself, and tried to tell him I live over there and have for 7 years now. He didnt want to hear any of it. He then called the non emergency number for the police, i could hear it on his phone. The police dont respond to non emergencys here. Then im pretty sure he dialed 911, because he got someone on the phone. I could hear the dispatcher say, go back to your home and stay inside. He then began to argue with the dispatcher saying no, im walking my dogs, im not going home. I approached him saying can you give them my information, he reaponded dont walk towards me or my dogs will attack you. I was like whoa! Btw his dogs seemed very friendly but at that point I just went home. Anyways i drove around the block and saw him outside his house, so at least i know what house/street to avoid. Im pretty sure they would not have sent anyone out, and im sure the dispatcher heard me saying, can you give them my info. I cannot believe how unfriendly people are but then again rockford is full of people like that and thats why this town has the problems that it does. Instead of being friendly, people attack eachother. This situation really makes me grateful to have found this website, because without it I may not have handled this situation quite so well. Also since starting metal detecting amd not working so much, I have been a much nicer person. So a big thanks to all of you on here! Oh yea, i did dig something up. Tell me with this whole situation dont you find this item a little ironic? I found Jesus!
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Old 08-08-2018, 06:26 PM
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Wow what a tool that guy was. Maybe just ignore his kind next time.

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Old 08-08-2018, 06:27 PM
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Awesome find....I'm sorry that you had that experience though...it's a shame that some people just feel the need to meddle in other people's business. It would be one thing if you were digging at "his" curb strip...even though you'd be within your rights, it would be a bit different, and personally I'd respect a polite request to move along.

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Old 08-08-2018, 06:45 PM
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5-0 Lol ....."what up Banger? "

Yeah, when people take care of that piece and think it's theirs this is going to happen. If you had someone digging in your back yard you would feel the same way, and they think that curb strip is theirs. I generally stay away front the hassle. Your right at least in most cities, just not sure if it's worth the headache

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Old 08-08-2018, 06:47 PM
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Sorry to hear about your "neighbor"!
I am glad to hear that you found something worthwhile

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Old 08-08-2018, 07:46 PM
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I cant believe it, an officer actually showed up, and im glad she did. She told me to just make sure I get permission first. It was a very friendly encounter and I made sure to tell her how much trash I clean up. She told me it was trespassing when I dig a hole, but when I asked for clarification on the exact ordinance, she couldn't come up with anything, and I was not about to start arguing with her, I know better than that. Needless to say I will be doing some research on the subject and asking for permission from now on.
Thanks for the consolation everyone, in my mind it was not a bad experience, but a bit of fun and excitement to my day. It was too hot to be out hunting anyways.

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Old 08-08-2018, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by GroundSweeper View post
Wow what a tool that guy was. Maybe just ignore his kind next time.
I actually said a friendly hello and smiled when he walked by. One of the things I have enjoyed about being out detecting is meeting some of my neighbors, but this one, no so much.

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Old 08-08-2018, 08:30 PM
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Here's a little something I'll share OP, and not saying you did anything wrong, you didn't. Just offering something to think about.

I used to have little patience for old grouchy people, who couldn't drive but when they did it was 15mph under the limit. I could go on with examples, but I think everyone knows what I mean.

Then I watched my dad grow elderly, and while he was a good-hearted man who'd give anybody the shirt off his back if he thought they needed it, and a WWII Vet.

He had his rare moments where he'd snip at me for nothing, and driving with him was something I preferred not doing. He passed away at 90, 3 years ago.

My point is, now I'm a bit more forgiving when it comes to older people. Remember....you'll be there some day too.

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Old 08-08-2018, 09:17 PM
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Lincoln-land, that is a crazy story. But ... as you surmise ... this has nothing to do with detecting. And everything to do with simply having bumped into someone who is just plain not-nice. Ie.: the type person who like to gripe. And who considers themselves the "self-appointed" monitor of all-others-business.

And it reminds me of why I like to do most of my metal detecting at night these days. So peaceful. So serene.
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Old 08-08-2018, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Gauntlet View post
Here's a little something I'll share OP, and not saying you did anything wrong, you didn't. Just offering something to think about.

I used to have little patience for old grouchy people, who couldn't drive but when they did it was 15mph under the limit. I could go on with examples, but I think everyone knows what I mean.

Then I watched my dad grow elderly, and while he was a good-hearted man who'd give anybody the shirt off his back if he thought they needed it, and a WWII Vet.

He had his rare moments where he'd snip at me for nothing, and driving with him was something I preferred not doing. He passed away at 90, 3 years ago.

My point is, now I'm a bit more forgiving when it comes to older people. Remember....you'll be there some day too.
Thanks for sharing that. I too lost my old man, just a little over a year ago he was 65 and I worked almost everyday with him since before I gratuated high school until he couldnt walk. I sure hope I make it to an old age.

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Old 08-08-2018, 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom_in_CA View post
Lincoln-land, that is a crazy story. But ... as you surmise ... this has nothing to do with detecting. And everything to do with simply having bumped into someone who is just plain not-nice. Ie.: the type person who like to gripe. And who considers themselves the "self-appointed" monitor of all-others-business.

And it reminds me of why I like to do most of my metal detecting at night these days. So peaceful. So serene.
Seriously at night? I would think that at night it would seem all the more suspicious. Hmmm maybe ill go hit his easement tonight

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Old 08-08-2018, 11:50 PM
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Originally Posted by LandOLincoln View post
... I would think that at night it would seem all the more suspicious....
Well, maybe this wouldn't apply to parking strips in front of homes. But it certainly applies to nicely manicured turf in parks , haha

I drove street sweepers for many years @ night-shift. And got very accustomed to the empty streets, and few if any pedestrians out and about. So .... you're more likely to bump into some dog walker at 2pm, than at 2am. Just sayin' .....

But no matter how you slice it: Your situation didn't have to do with turf , or md'ing, or holes, in the first place. It was just an un-nice guy. And rather than trying to reason with such a person (trying to get him to "approve of you"), it's my tactic to just avoid such individuals. Some md'rs might call that "sneaking around". Ok, fine then: Sneak around. Doh !
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Old 08-09-2018, 02:47 PM
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What an @#$ Wipe. Here's a great option when they threaten to call the cops. Its worked for me.

Just say something like:

"Please do call the police, if you don't I will. You threatened me, you are detaining me against my will, violating my civil rights, impeding my livelihood and illegally attempting to force me off public property. And now you're attempting to file a false police report, also illegal. I can sure use the money and my attorney can use the work.



It works. Of course, you have to be in the right and if the police do show up, the hot head is going to make himself look unstable while you act calm, professional, etc. And don't leave a bag of burning dog !!!! on his porch. It's much better to sling it against his car door handles. LOL

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Old 08-09-2018, 02:52 PM
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Now that you know where he lives, it sounds like some frozen round-up ice cubes and a sling shot could keep him busy with his lawn for awhile......
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Old 08-09-2018, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Tpmetal View post
Now that you know where he lives, it sounds like some frozen round-up ice cubes and a sling shot could keep him busy with his lawn for awhile......
LOL! That's a great idea!

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Old 08-09-2018, 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by RBachman View post
.....

Just say something like:

"Please do call the police, if you don't I will.....
....
As much as I agree with you that our hobby is benign and harmless .... and thus not illegal to do what we do . And as much as I agree that the busy-body there was a #@!-wipe :

I would be careful with this type of confrontation reply. Because EVEN THOUGH YOU AND I KNOW our hobby is harmless, and that we're on public legal easements, yet : Let's be dreadfully honest : The public's perception is logically "oh no, he's going to leave holes" (even though, yes, they're incorrect). Or that they think they own the easement strip as part of their yard (even though, yes, they're incorrect).

Just saying that ..... you could open up a bigger can of worms. Trying to debate that your poking around in the grass wasn't creating any harm (even though, yes I agree with you, that it doesn't). Or to get into semantics real estate debates on the parking strip (after all, the homeowner mows and waters it).

So while what you are saying is true, yet I wouldn't be so quick offer up your type reply. Sometimes you have to "pick your battles". And .... there *are* connotations that a man with a detector carries.
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Old 08-09-2018, 11:43 PM
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Originally Posted by LandOLincoln View post
Seriously at night? I would think that at night it would seem all the more suspicious.
Originally Posted by Tom_in_CA View post
Well, maybe this wouldn't apply to parking strips in front of homes. But it certainly applies to nicely manicured turf in parks , haha
I've actually spent quite a bit of time curb stripping at night this summer - mostly in the older residential areas. With young kids out of school all summer, I often can't get out until after they're in bed, which is 9:30pm for my oldest. For me, hitting the curb strips at night has several benefits besides fitting my schedule better: it's generally cooler, no need for sunblock, very close to home, and fewer busybodies. But, yes, the major drawback is that you do look more suspicious to some folks. And the reality is that I'm only trading sunblock for bug spray...but the sun and I aren't friends, so I'll make that trade!

Anyway, I've typically been hitting these curb strips between 10pm and 1am. It's a college town, so there's always some car traffic or the occasional pedestrian at these hours, but for the most part I'm just swinging in peace. I always stay aware of my surroundings to the best of my ability and avoid strips that look like they might cause problems: I don't dig by parked cars, I skip houses if a dog starts to bark, etc. I've been noticed countless times of course, but I'm sort of surprised that I've only been "confronted" 3 times...regardless, I'm sure if I was curb stripping during the day, the confrontation rate would probably quadruple.

In all three encounters, the folks started out very suspicious and with fairly confrontational tones - and understandably so...from their perspective they've found an individual digging "in their front yard" in the middle of the night! In the first two encounters, the folks questioned me directly, which allowed me to defuse the situation pretty quickly. I quickly explained what I was doing, why I was there at that time of night, and that I was careful to remain in the public right of way between the street and sidewalk - not in their yard. Both encounters ended on peaceful, friendly terms, and I continued detecting the same strip - I didn't have to "move on".

The third encounter was much more interesting - he never physically approached me. I noticed him watching me from his porch across the street and several houses down while I was getting my gear out of my car and setting up to detect. It was about 10:45pm - I briefly considered moving along to a different spot, but I decided to continue. My first signal went fine, but on my second dig I hear "Hey...what the f--- do you think you're doing?" shouted at me from down the street. I shifted my position so that I could see him (still on his porch several doors down), but continued securing the find and covering the plug. When I stood, I could see the light of a cell phone in his hand, so I knew what was coming next. I could have left, but I figured that just looks more suspicious, and I knew I was perfectly legal. So I kept hunting, but never turned my back on my new "friend".

Sure enough, within about 5-10 minutes a police cruiser rolls up the street from the other direction, coming to a stop several houses down. Once the officer stepped out of the car, I stopped detecting, leaned the detector against a tree and walked toward him, greeting him with a smile in the process: "Good evening, officer...I knew you were getting a call about me!" I explained that I was metal detecting the right of way, when the gentleman down the street shouted at me with some profanity - I mentioned that ordinarily if folks ask me what I'm doing, I'm happy to explain, but with behavior like that, I felt it was best to just ignore him. The officer was extremely polite, and seemed amused that he was called about a metal detectorist. His backup arrived while I was still explaining what I was doing - Officer #1 says "he was just metal detecting", and Officer #2 shakes his head and says "it's amazing what some folks will call about"!! Turns out Officer #2 used to do a little detecting also! Long story short, they checked my ID of course, but otherwise I ended up giving them a short demonstration of the detector, and answering the standard questions from Officer #1 about the kinds of stuff I find and other places I detect. The Shift Supervisor even rolled up by then...I was quite the curiosity, apparently! The end result...they said "You're just fine doing what your doing - carry on, and good luck finding something good". The whole interaction was maybe 10-15 minutes, tops - and extremely friendly throughout. I continued to detect the strip for another hour without any more issues.

I did ask whether it would be better if I called the non-emergency line and gave the dispatcher a heads up that I would be detecting on a particular street. They said I could if I wanted to, but it really wasn't necessary - they would have to come and investigate if someone called either way.

So, what started out as a potentially dangerous encounter with a resident turned into an excellent, confidence building interaction with local law enforcement. I'm now on their radar in a good way, and it's given me even more confidence about continuing to detect in my home town at night. Obviously, your mileage may vary in other places.

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Old 08-10-2018, 12:01 AM
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Originally Posted by AirmetTango View post
.... The third encounter was much more interesting - .....
Great story airmet-tango ! Yes: Believe it or not, the police in most cities in the USA have ... uh ... 'better things to do'. And ... despite the supposed fears we are to feel (the constant drone that some md'rs feel we are be worried about) , yet you're right : The few times something like this DOES unfold, the cops are not concerned. (unless, of course, you were in an obvious historic sensitive monument, or leaving holes, etc...)

One time, some buddies and I were inside a fenced demolition scrape. A park that had been scraped to prepare for artificial turf installation. We were out there busily digging old silver. But apparently some crime had gone down on a nearby street (we heard the sound of gunshots). A few minutes later, the entire neighborhood was crawling with police, lights, sirens, etc... And here we were in this dark enclave fenced site !!

A policeman came running through the park with his flashlight, and spotted my friend . Came up to him and said "what are you doing ?". My friend said "metal detecting". The cop just shook his head, ran off saying "I've got bigger fish to fry" . Doh !
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Old 08-10-2018, 07:32 AM
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Some people
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Old 08-10-2018, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by RBachman View post
LOL! That's a great idea!
My uncle drove a man crazy like that....guy was all ticked that dandelions were blowing from his property onto his nice lawn. somehow he got the town to force my uncle to spray his fields with some messed up weed stuff. So every night when he smoked his stogie, he would bring an round-up ice cube and his wrist rocket down to the corner of his property. Poor guy could not figure out why his lawn kept getting giant brown spots.... I think he ended up moving.
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