Social Question

Unbroken's avatar

I need advice on personal matter (details inside)

Asked by Unbroken (9382 points ) November 21st, 2012

Is it healthier to stay informed and to what extent if you had a implicit in an offender getting charged with a minor felony and several misdemeanor charges.

He had prior ambitions to go into the health field. In fact he was in college at the time he was charged.

He is now being released on parole, which was very strict, one condition was completing a mental health evaluation and being compliant with all of their recommendations.

I got a notification he was being released on parole and form asking if I want to: comment or attend any final parole and revocation,
be notified of offender’s escape of custody,
notification of offender’s release from custody, notification special parole hearings,
or of application of executive clemency,
a current photo,
any petitions by offender for modification reduction of sentence,
or if he’s interviewed by media, or no further contact.

His parole is to be served in the town I live and isn’t very large town either.

My preconceived notion of this move on with life don’t look behind. I did what I could. This was a very short lived relationship. He’ll be too scared. I have no idea how to move on if I am always involved in this.

My restraining order will be up soon as well, do I go back every year to renew that?

On the other hand while I have taken a gun safety class and practiced a little I still don’t own a gun and I live alone. I have taken a basic self defense train class.

But the guy is 60 lbs heavier is significantly taller and has military training and has seen combat.

He also stalked and caused property damage to my friends and family. Which in a way feels like the scariest and most helpless feeling. So while I have moved, they haven’t, he also knows where I work and what car I drive. I might buy a new vehicle.

My friends and family are pretty split: move on. You’ll be protected by the system. Why would he go after you when he will face more jail time if he does, and it was a very short lived relationship any how? He has PTSD give him a break people make mistakes. He paid for his crime let both of you move on. How long do you want to be the lady the psycho ex?

To a sardonic half serious, I can’t be seen in public with you any more. To the guy is mentally unbalanced he doesn’t know what he is going to do next. You already screwed up his career, limited his job options, and he is stuck in a state where he has a dv record so it will be harder to attach himself to another women, he spent a year probably hating you.

Then all these addtional options make it more confusing. It’s not my duty to prevent him from having a life.

He made a mistake, thankfully we all walked away from it alive and in one piece. But it wasn’t a momentary mistake he stalked me for months. I moved, I tried to get a restraining order, when that failed it just fed his thought that he was justified.

Where do my actions cross the line between self protection and insurance and what is rational?

How far this one letter and phone call have stressed me out make me realize I probably can’t make a rational judgement right now.

Which might be more upsetting right now then anything else. I had convinced myself I was over this. I have tossed around this decision for almost a week and keep flipping.

Can some one bring logic, reason and clarity to the table?

Thanks for reading the long winded angsty narrative and in advance for any insight.

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28 Answers

Shippy's avatar

Naturally this has brought up old feelings on the matter, panic, fear and probably a whole host of feelings you are having. I think it makes pertinent good sense to know his where abouts, and what is happening in his life currently. Simply because he caused a problem for you in the past. There are two parts to this. Your emotion and fear, and then there is the sensible things to do. For example, I don’t walk down a dark street at 1am in the morning. It is kind of the same thing. It enables you to know how to carry out your life in a safe manner.

Stalkers often do switch to a new obsession, if in fact that is what his problem is. This could very well happen. I am not saying this is good (for the poor other new victim) but it is something to bear in mind.

You did say you were invited to comment? I personally would say him being free does cause me major anxiety for these reasons. (State reasons), and ask what has the judicial system done to improve on his situation if there is a possibility of such? As you feel all people deserve a right to be rehabilitated.

Because you are going to gun training, which I guess is a strong rescue move and can only signify you will fight back (which is good). There is still a lot of unresolved emotion involved. Can you talk it through with a trusted counselor? or other able body? Your fear is indicative of what you went through, don’t minimize it.

Clarity: He harmed you in the past, that is a fact, will he do so again? This you can follow up with the authorities detaining him.
Logic: You do need to know his whereabouts. It does not mean you have to feel about it, but it makes more sense to be aware of what the ‘enemy’ is up to. Also there is good logic in the fact that he will not do it again? As he is afraid of further punishment. But that goes back to clarity. You have rights as a victim to know, that is what I feel.

psyonicpanda's avatar

Though it might now sound like the best thing I would Highly suggest that you move on from this. I have been in a Military surrounding my whole life and have seen first hand the positives and negatives of PTSD. It is indeed a serious condition and I would recommend you do nothing that would make him relapse in to his old ways. And being around you will only bring up the past. And the past for him should stay just that. @Shippy is absolutely correct. You have the right as a person to feel safe and to feel secure. DO NOT engage in any activity with this person even something as simple as a phone call or text can invoke his “stalkeresque” attributes. But as I am not a health care professional, I have no right to tell you what to do or not. I only hope that you deal with this situation with reason and logic, and do what is best for yourself first and foremost. Do not put yourself in a situation in which you may be hurt in any way. Keep your restraining order, and if he crosses it by even a fraction then report it. Its for his own good as well.

marinelife's avatar

You are in a dangerous situation.

Men who have done what he did may not “get over” you.

Restraining orders are little protection.

If it was me, I would change my name and move before he gets out. I would not tell my relatives or friends where I was going.

It is not over until he makes it over.

Pandora's avatar

Unfortunately peace of mind is not something that can easily be grasped. I think it is better to be made aware than not knowing. I would hope that some counseling was ordered for him as well since it may be as @psyonicpanda suggest and he suffers from PTSD.
The best defense is an offense.
I would continue with the protective orders. Crazy people don’t spontaneously heal and just because you bought protection doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed to work when you need it too.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I would get as far away as I could and get a firearm. Males can be scum, I know, I’m one. I’m guessing time in prison hasn’t improved his outlook at all. A piece of paper saying he has to stay away from you is worth less than the price of the paper it’s written on. This one has warning lights flashing all over the place. You stay where he can find you and he will. It sucks that you have to get away to be safe. But that’s life sometimes.

Judi's avatar

If you don’t feel safe then do what you need to do to protect yourself.
It sucks that you are in this situation but pretending it doesn’t exist won’t change your situation. If you think you are still in danger then you need to be aware. The ostrich philosophy seems foolish to me.

Cupcake's avatar

Go back every year and renew the restraining order.

Him “paying for his crime” does not mean his is rehabilitated, doesn’t mean he’s not a threat and doesn’t mean you are safe around him.

What he does with his life and what options he has are NOT your business. His choices… his consequences.

Move on in terms of:
– get counseling
– set boundaries
– learn to be brave and not live in fear
– when you are afraid, get help
– be in charge of your own destiny
– inform your neighbors/landlord/etc. about the situation and give them a photo of him

Move on doesn’t mean ignore or forget. It doesn’t mean take on responsibility for his actions.

Think long and hard about getting a gun. Talk to local law enforcement. How many guns end up used against the owner? I’m not saying don’t get a gun. I’m saying be fully informed. Would you be putting yourself at an even greater risk by having one in the house??

LuckyGuy's avatar

All the platitudes in the world will not make you feel better or safer. Direct actions will. Take control of your situation.

1) Get the restraining order.
2) Get a 4 or 8 channel home surveillance system. They only cost $250 from Zmodo. They are easy to set up and work in all light levels. Read the manual and learn how to program the motion detection. If anyone walks on your property it will record and even set off an alarm if you want.
Don’t tell me you can’t afford it. If you have cable TV, cancel it and get the security system.
3) Get a pistol permit.and buy something you can handle like a S&W 8 shot .22 revolver. It is a great starter gun and quite effective. Sure the purist will say “go big”, or “that will just piss him off” but you will never find one of them willing to stand in front of you when you pull the trigger. You will likely never need to use it but knowing it is there will help you .

I have property in a rural area in the mountains that is inhabited by bear. When I walk in the woods, I almost always carry a weapon. I feel safe and and don’t even think about it. If I go out and forget the gun, I am constantly looking over my shoulder and jumping at every sound I hear. I hate it.
Do you know how many times I have shot the gun at bear? Zero. But it sure make me feel better knowing that I can.
Your bear has a face, a car, and a social security number. That can be even more dangerous.

PM me if you need info on the purchase of either of the items above. I have more than average experience in those areas.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@LuckyGuy The choice of the .22 surprised me at first, but it makes a heck of a lot of sense. It’s something she can practice a lot with and get comfortable handling. If he gets through 8 rounds there’s really something wrong with him. Hollow points too?

LuckyGuy's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe It is easy and economical to shoot. There is no kick and your hand does not get sore if you go out and shoot a box of 50. The revolver is simple, reliable, and can be loaded with many different types of ammo at the same time. With 8 shot the first can be bird shot that scatters and disorients while the second, third and fourth are the fearsome Velocitors that are powerful enough to take down a deer at 75 years with a single round.
With 8 shots you quickly learn to fire multiple times in succession. .

No one should have to live in fear in their own homes (or while walking in the woods).

Unbroken's avatar

Yikes. I thought for sure I was blowing this out of proportion.
Every one made good points.

@Shippy So I have decided for sure I need to stay informed. And get a current photo. I have been looking at guns, @LuckyGuy and @Adirondackwannabe I was taken by a s&w concealed carry if I remember it was a .357 or a 9mil it seemed quality light had a smooth trigger pull and lighted sites for shooting in the dark. It was 600 and I wasn’t sure that was reasonable.

Like someone @Cupcake said earlier, I am not certain I would be able to use a gun and not have it turned on me. I hope I can. But it is untested theory at this point. But the police in my experiece have a ½ to 1 hour response time and I don’t want to be dependent on that.

Moving doesn’t seem practical at this point. But I will look into Zmodo.

There is no way I would call or text him, but there are limited number of grocery stores and I can avoid all my areas I used to frequent when we were seeing each other but if he comes looking for me he has several good places to start.

And I have mixed feelings about him switching targets. I mean I would hope he gets help but when he finally in ninth hour plead out he said he was guilty he guessed, and that the system failed him, I had encouraged him to get help earlier at several points in time. He seemed to waver between he didn’t need it, or he was scared to. Even though he is will be demanded to comply with treatment I have a feeling these things work better when not shoved down your throat. So my personal safety seems dependent on him switching targets but that is just a sad condition to be in.

Thank you so much for all the advice I am kinda thinking aloud right now. So just bear with me a little.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@rosehips If you’ve never killed anything with a gun, maybe you should practice on some animals first. It could be rats at a dump, hunting, or whatever. Shooting a gun at a living creature is different. Some people can do it some can’t. If you can’t do it the gun in your hands would be worse than no gun at all. I’m going to take so much crap for this, but I think it’s worth considering.
(runs for cover.)

LuckyGuy's avatar

The 9mm or 357 kicks too much for a beginner. They are expensive to buy and shoot.
The 22 with bird shot for the first round and Velocitors for the next is incredibly effective in a quick situation. That first shot makes noise and puts out hundreds of small bbs in a wide pattern that blinds and disorients. It has no kick so you have time to fire the real shot that will explode anything it hits.
A S&W 22 is $300. A box of 50 CCI Velocitors is $6. You can buy a brick of 1000 rounds for about $15 for practice.

wundayatta's avatar

No gun. Guns are more likely to kill the owner than anyone else.

Best to avoid him as best you can. Keep informed on what he looks like and where he lives and what he does for a living. Stay updated on his picture. Renew the restraining order.

He is not right in the head if he is stalking and violent. He will not change without a concerted effort and sincere commitment to it. He has to admit he has a problem. Most stalkers blame their stalkee and never accept responsibility.

I guess you live in a small community, so it is hard to avoid him. You have to plan what to do when you run into him. You also have to plan what to do when he shows up at your door or at your car. Maybe mace? Whatever your self defense class taught you. Run. Just run. If at home, keep the house barricaded so no one can break in. Perhaps set up your own private emergency system. Someone you can call or text and they will come immediately. A neighbor, preferably.

If you have a good reason to do so, you might move somewhere else. Out of state, perhaps. You would lose your connection with your family, but the peace of mind would be better. On the other hand, the other unknowns would be worse—finding a job, friends, home, etc. But we’re talking about protecting your life. In my mind, that is worth drastic steps. But I would hate to see you have to leave town for this reason. On the other hand, if there was something you were moving towards, it would be different.

janedelila's avatar

If I am reading your question properly, it looks to me like someone is actually (!) saying you ruined his life/career/chances with another woman. I am infuriated by that attitude. I am actually currently in a similar situation. I got my PFA from the judge, and the first person who tells me that I may be exaggerating, or that any of this may be my fault is never going to want to see my face again when I get done with them. I hate that type of emotional abuse from people. Like we haven’t been through enough. Eliminate these people. At least tell them to shut up.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Guns are fine if you:
A. Know how to handle them and are skilled in their use.
B. Are willing to use them if you bring them out.
Otherwise don’t get a gun.

Bellatrix's avatar

This man has military training. I would guess he is very skilled at both using a weapon and disarming others. I would be very cautious about suggesting you arm yourself and take him on. Your best bet is to stay right out his way and have nothing to do with him. If you see him, or he contacts you, call the police and go somewhere safe if necessary.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Bellatrix I agree with your theory 100 percent. But the police response is ½ to an hour where she is. She doesn’t take him out right off she’s toast.

Bellatrix's avatar

Or she may be toast if she tries to. He has military training! I’m pretty sure he could disarm a woman who isn’t used to using a gun. I wouldn’t have a clue how to use one but even with minimal training, strikes me as more dangerous for her to be armed than to try to get out of his way.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

If she’s unarmed and giving up 60 pounds to him and he wants to hurt her she’s toast. My point A was skilled in their use. I’m very good with them. If she doesn’t become skilled in their use, yes, they’re more dangerous to have than not. But if it’s me, I want the weapon.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Bellatrix I like how we can completely disagree on an issue, discuss it, and completely respect each other :). Maybe some other jellies could try this.

Bellatrix's avatar

Agree wholeheartedly @Adirondackwannabe. Now give me a hug! Virtually of course.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

HUGE HUG! Yeah, it’s really nice when we’re civil.

Shippy's avatar

I thought I’d make a side note, that this comment: “Because you are going to gun training, which I guess is a strong rescue move and can only signify you will fight back (which is good)” I meant more the “rescue” aspect. Not promoting gun use at all.

Many guns are used on the person who have them for safety reasons but not all.

Lot’s of women here carry guns for safety but personally I am scared of guns. I use pepper sprays or stun guns.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Um @Bellatrix…. I agree with @Adirondackwannabe Can I have a hug too?

Bellatrix's avatar

@LuckyGuy, sure thing but disarm that pistol first!

LuckyGuy's avatar

@Bellatrix Absolutely. I’ll flip the safety on.

Unbroken's avatar

@janedelila Thanks for the reminder. I know not to take this comment for more then face value. However I have to also consider this is what he could be in thinking about sitting in jail. He never was good at admitting he made a mistake unless there was instant gratification if he did.

I do like how @Bellatrix @Adirondackwannabe @LuckyGuy can disagree and talk about the differences instead of caving to another or getting harpy about it.

Every one has good points. I guess it would be how much I value my life. I do have a remarkable survival instinct. But am not sure I could practice on animals. I have been able to mercy kill a few of my cats new friends and I do like meat, how ever even catch and release fishing makes me want to calm and soothe the poor fish down and unpierce its lips Instead of pulling the hook out molly bolt style. I love animals.

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