A Chinese entrepreneur known only as Danny due to security concerns, told NBC’s Matt Lauer on TODAY that “God was with me” when the Boston Marathon bomber brothers commandeered him and his vehicle, according to the TODAY show on May 1. And while that is true, it is also true that the young attack victim did some things that were right when it came to his responses during the commission of the crime.
The bombers appeared initially to be merely carjackers with a vehicle theft motive, since the 26-year-old was sitting in a new Mercedes when first approached, but Danny quickly learned that they were dangerous men who confessed to their earlier crimes of bombing and murder.
A call placed to him from his roommate during the carjacking effort by the Boston Marathon suspects provided him with his first attempt to alert someone to his predicament, but while his friend was confused about why his Chinese friend was suddenly speaking to him in English, he had no idea that Danny was in a hostage situation. And it wasn’t going to lead to Danny’s rescue. And he was smart enough to realize it.
Fortunately the young man was clever enough to realize that he needed to formulate a plan B in order to escape his abductors Tamerlan and Dzhokhar, which consisted of waiting for an opportune time to make his escape from the clutches of the threatening men in the car with him.
That time came when Dzhokhar exited the vehicle to go to an ATM machine and to pump gas, leaving his brother behind to guard their prisoner. And Danny took advantage of the one-man security detail to flee his own vehicle and run to another gas station nearby, where he phoned 911.
The U.S. Department of State says that you don’t have to be a victim of carjacking, which is one of the most prevalent crimes in many parts of the world. And they’re right, even law enforcement agencies at the local, state and federal level advise the public that the odds of surviving a carjacking diminish the longer you are in the car with your abductors.
And that is why police agencies, like the Hoover Police Department give advice to would-be citizen victims about carjacking from the Law Enforcement Officer’s Complete Crime Prevention Manual.
This crime prevention manual states that if at all possible, one should never go with a suspect in a carjacking whether you are in the car or not at the time of the attempt.
And it also states that in the event the carjacker appears to just want your car, then be smart enough to give it to them rather than fighting them for it, which could end up causing them to take you with them if they don’t kill you on the spot.
Your safety and that of your passengers during a carjacking should be the uppermost thought on your mind, as well as exiting the vehicle and moving to safety, far away from the man or men taking your mode of transportation away from you.
So if you are in the vehicle at the time of the carjacking, like the Boston carjacking victim nicknamed Danny, then the law enforcement manual recommends that you start making a plan of escape if the carjacker prevents your efforts to exit the vehicle, because you should “have a plan—do something; don’t just sit there,” the manual states.
Thankfully, the carjacking victim had a plan and he worked it. And he is alive because of it, in part. But according to the LE manual, he might have prevented his carjacking if he had followed some safety suggestions, like fleeing any scene that appears to be a threatening one before the crime happens, and also by never opening one’s window when approached.
Police recommend you talk to people through your raised window when unexpectedly approached in your car while parked, if you must talk to them at all. Otherwise, they recommend you enter and exit your vehicle and move on and avoid remaining in a parked space indefinitely, where you can become a target of a carjacker.
National Criminal Profiles Examiner Radell Smith holds a degree in criminal justice and behavioral forensics, and she has successful profiling experience with unsolved homicide cases as well as knowledge and experience in the field of law enforcement at the local, state and federal levels.
© 2013 Radell Smith
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