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Old 08-27-2005, 01:35 AM
SunSwept SunSwept is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Conyers, GA
Posts: 93
Customer saved me ...

I was mowing at the very back of a property when I looked towards the street. Sure enough, someone is at the trailor helping themself to a few things. In fact, there were two at the trailor and another in a vehicle stopped next to the trailor.

I shut down the mower, pulled the key and start running towards the street. They see me and I know that they are grabbing what ever they can while I am running ... their plan looks to be to grab as much as they can before I get too close.

Just as I am coming around the house into the front yard I hear Ka-Pow! A gun shot. I first think "they are shooting at me" and I stop dead in my tracks and look at them. They are frozen, looking towards the house. I turn and see the customer with a gun pointed at them.

"Put it all back." Was the only thing he said to them.

He asked me what I wanted to do with them and I said to let them go. I didn't want the police around because I didn't want the customer to get into a bunch of trouble for shooting a warning shot into the air or threatening them with a handgun.

Believe it or not, this was the fist time I ever cut for the guy.

OK, now the questions: 1) Anything like that ever happen to you? 2) I knocked 1/2 off of the bill for this and the next cut (he saved me a LOT more) ... would you have done the same? 3) Was I wrong in letting them go? I suspect that they might try it again BUT they sure looked as though they needed to change their pants. I also got their license number and had a little "fun" with them using an axe handle I keep around.
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Old 08-27-2005, 01:44 AM
burns60 burns60 is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: North Mississippi
Posts: 291
Saw a guy rummaging around in my truck and trailor one day as I was mowing a distance from him, but never anything like this. For sure I would reward the customer as you did, he deserved it. Well, you probably should have turned them in. The customer probably is aware of the trouble he may be in for the "warning" shot, but that was your judgement call to make. Glad you are not out any equipment and you or your customer were not hurt, although it sounds like the customer never intended to get hurt, just be the "hurter".
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Old 08-27-2005, 01:54 AM
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Itsgottobegreen Itsgottobegreen is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Maryland
Posts: 2,179
lets just say thats a customer you want to keep.
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Old 08-27-2005, 04:20 AM
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sheshovel sheshovel is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: zone 7 CA
Posts: 5,112
COOL!!Mabey they will think about it twice next time!
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Old 08-27-2005, 05:44 AM
WLC WLC is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: NE TN
Posts: 80
:blob3: Hell yeah!!! Tell us more about the axe handle! :blob3: Turn em' in!!! .....what warning shot? gun? huh? officer let me explain...
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Old 08-27-2005, 06:40 AM
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LandscapeSolutions LandscapeSolutions is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Manhattan, Kansas
Posts: 59
Thats one hell of a customer! I really don't understand the mentality that people who steal things'd think they know it is morally wrong and illegal. If I ever caught someone attempting to steal any of my equipment I'd bet the living daylights outta them. Hell....maybe I should keep a pair of handcuffs in my truck and then once someone tries to jack my stuff I'll cuff em to street sign or something....................

I've heard there is a LCO in my town that steals other companies equipment. Ive never witnessed it, but I wouldnt doubt the validity of it. Afterall, the magnets on his truck say, " Perfection, Lock Smith, Security." Perfection is his LCO name, but locksmith and security?????? I guess he would know how to pop a lock.............
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Old 08-27-2005, 06:41 AM
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Sharp Services Sharp Services is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Eastover, SC
Posts: 268
Does your customer have any friends in South Carolina, if so please ask him to give them my number. I hope you remember him at Christmas.

I think you did the right thing. My full time job for the past 16 years is that of a police officer (9 more until I can retire and cut grass full time) and I know that your customer would be in trouble. Warning shoots are not allowed and by law you can't use a gun unless you are protecting someone or yourself against physical harm.

That said ... I am glad for you If more people did what your customer did, I probably would not have chains and locks running through all my equipment and could save time and make more money. I bet I spend 10 or 15 minutes per job messing with the locks.

I think you were lucky and I am glad that you did not have to spend the rest of the day buying new equipment.
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Old 08-27-2005, 07:08 AM
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1MajorTom 1MajorTom is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 6,095
Sounds like you were able to remain pretty calm, glad to hear it worked out for you. Yep I think taking something off the customers bill is a good thing to do in this situation.
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Old 08-27-2005, 07:47 AM
MarcSmith MarcSmith is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Washington DC
Posts: 7,238
I know your in GA, and its against teh lat not to carry a gun, but remember what goes up, must come down. I hope it did not come down in a populated area. Unless he shot the ground.

I would have called the cops...Cut the grass for the very least...

Mr Officer that was not a gun, it was my lawnmoewr backfiring after I jumped off it to beat the punks ass...

My client never fired a shot....
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Old 08-27-2005, 08:01 AM
SWD SWD is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Central Texas - West of Austin in the Hill Country
Posts: 989
One of the things that makes Texas an okay state to live is deadly force is allowed to protect/prevent property loss.
I would not of mentioned the customer shooting in the air to the police, and I would of had the cops involved.
As far as the customer themselves, I wouldn't cut for free although they would have had a higher priority in the work schedule.
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