Many people who care a lot about me have expressed sincere concern that I will fall prey to some criminal injury as I make this trip across the continent.

I received this email TWICE yesterday from concerned family members. I am sure many of you have received this and also know that is an urban legend in circulation since 2003.

Later that day, I walked into a local restaurant and noticed a new sign posted with the regular messages of for sale items, fishing competitions, and upcoming local events.

I think they make an interesting pairing with regard to our stories of strangers, imagined and real.

Fwd: Fwd: FW: A rapist’s new trick – all women read this please


Read it all the way through.

Subject: Know what money you are carrying! You will see why as you read!

Be sure every lady is aware of this M.O. Share with it your wife and daughters. Know what money you are carrying..

This was the first I have heard of a scheme like this….. I wanted to pass it along. Be safe! Something very serious to pay attention to.

Criminals are coming up with craftier, less threatening methods of attack, so we have to be extra cautio! us. Read on.. I live in Alexandria, VA, but I often work in Lafayette, LA, staying with friends when I’m there. As you know from America’s Most Wanted TV program, as well as the news media, there is a serial killer in the Lafayette area. I just want to let you know about an “incident” that happened to me a few weeks ago, and could have been deadly.

At first I didn’t go to the police or anyone with it because I didn’t realize how serious this encounter was. But since I work in a jail and I told a few people about it, it wasn’t long before I was paraded into Internal Affairs to tell them my story. It was proximately 5:15 a.m. in Opelousas, La. I had stayed with a friend there and was on my way to work.

I stopped at the Exxon/Blimpie Pie station to get gas. I got $10 gas and a Diet Coke. I took into the store two $5 bills and one $1 bill (just enough to get my stuff).

As I pulled away from the store, a man approached my truck from the back side of ! the store (an unlit area). He was an “approachable-looking” man (clean cut, clean shaven, dressed well, etc.).

He walked up to my window and knocked. Since I’m very paranoid and “always looking for the rapist or killer,” I didn’t open the window.

I just asked what he wanted. He raised a $5 bill to my window and said, “You dropped this.” Since I knew I had gone into the store with a certain amount of money, I knew I didn’t drop it.

When I told him it wasn’t mine, he began hitting the window and door, screaming at me to open my door, and insisting that I had dropped the money! At that point, I just drove away as fast as I could. After talking to the Internal Affairs Department and describing the man I saw, and the way he escalated from calm and polite to angry and volatile…. it was determined that I could have possibly encountered the serial killer myself.

Up to this point, it had been unclear as to how he had gained access to his victims! , since there has been no evidence of forced entry into victim’s homes, cars, etc. And the fact that he has been attacking in the daytime, when women are less likely to have their guard up, means he is pretty BOLD.

So think about it… what gesture is nicer than returning money to someone that dropped it?????

How many times would you have opened your window (or door) to get your money and say thank you…. because if the person is kind enough to return something to you, then he can’t really be a threat…. can he???? Please be cautious! This might not have been the serial killer… but anyone that gets that angry over someone not accepting money from them, can’t have honorable intentions. The most important thing to note is that his reaction was ! NOT WHAT I EXPECTED! A total surprise! But what might have happened if I had opened my door? I shudder to think!

Forward this to everyone you know… maybe they can be as fortunate as I was!

P.S. Ladies, really DO forward this to EVERYONE you know Even if this man wasn’t a serial killer, he looked nice, he seemed polite, he was apparently doing an act of kindness, but HE WAS NOT A NICE PERSON!!!

Men send it to all the women in your life. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. Make it a good one!

Please forward to anyone you think might benefit from this story.

This story was dismissed as false by police at the time it began circulating in 2003.


And the true story:

true story


This story also reminded me of the strange man I discovered sneaking into my campsite late one evening at McKinney Falls State Park. I’d spoken with him briefly as I pulled in to the park, discouraged to realize that as a late arrival I’d missed the opportunity to purchase firewood.

And then later I saw him, sneaking into my campsite, very surreptitiously…

… unloading a bunch of firewood next to my firepit!

He’d collected it from abandoned campsites and said he wanted to deliver it without ‘bothering me’.

I’m glad I caught him and was able to thank him for his kindness.

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