Crime & Law Enforcement Issues & Death Penalty/Should I Just Have Ignored Two Drunks?


Dear Mr. Alas,

I'm wondering whether in hindsight I did the right thing, and I would really appreciate a experienced Police Officer's point of view.

I was coming home around 1am, and I stopped to get gas at a gas station next door to a bar.  As I was pumping my gas, two drunks came stumbling and falling out of the bar.  One of them couldn't walk without falling, and his almost equally drunk friend had to try and prop him up, although he could barely walk as well.

They were loud and using a lot of profanity.  I actually felt vulnerable and uncomfortable since I was outside my car and they were stumbling by the pumps, swearing, although they weren't directing their comments to me, they looked unpredictable.

They eventually managed to cut through the gas station and got onto a side street - on the side with no sidewalk.  They were about 80 feet from a very major road in out city of 5.5 million.

Then, they crossed the street where they stood and reeled around and were swearing and one man went behind the bushes (no doubt to relieve himself) on my condo property (about 15 feet from the sidewalk).  They stayed there and looked honestly too drunk to go anywhere or do anything.  I called 911 and told them the two men were really too drunk to be walking anywhere and described them and their location.

Within 3 or so minutes, two cruisers with one Officer inside each cruiser arrived and from a distance I saw them talking to the two men.  They then pretty much immediately put them into the back of one of the cruisers (at this point I could hear them yelling from the back seat).  Then, the two cruisers drove away, taking both men with them.  It all took less than ten minutes.

Now, I feel rather like Scrooge.  On one hand, they were presumably only drunk and it is almost Christmas, and their families and or girlfriends won't be happy with them now, but on the other hand, I've never seen anyone that drunk: they were almost helpless, so I don't know if I did the right thing?  I know I was heavily influenced by the fact that they were standing on my own condo's property, and we live in a very low crime area.  What do you think?

Thank you very much for your time.



Hi Jenn,
I know that you are questioning yourself, but please don't, you did the right thing. Wha t if you had not and in the morning heard about someone being mugged in your condo by two drunk guys? From experience, it is better to be safe than sorry. You noticed something that was not right, but you did not make the call for them to get arrested, the police did. I have been on too many calls where people wish they had done or acted when they saw or heard something.
Please don't beat yourself up and enjoy your Christmas.
Merry Christmas,

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Luis Alas


I am a retired Federal Law Enforcement Officer with 20 years in a combination of military security, police investigations and criminal investigations. I worked with several agencies through my tenure but my last five years were with the Federal Air Marshal Service. Currently I am a VP of a electronics security manufacturer providing leadership and client consulting specifically in the area of video surveillance.


1988-1996 USAF Security Specialist Nuclear Security and Security Police Investigations 1996-2001 Department of Veteran Affairs Police Department Miami Fl. 2001-2008 Federal Air Marshal Service

FLEOA Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association Security Police Association

Demand Studios - E-How Online Associated Content Security Distributors Magazine Various White Papers

USAF Security Police Academy USDVA Police Academy DHS Security Specialist/General Investigator AA Criminal Justice City Colleges of Chicago BA Criminal Justice University of Maryland MA Criminal Justice Management Trinity University & College

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Bryant Security Departamento Nacional de Investigaciones (Domincan Republic) LSG Government Contractor

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