So we all carry a flashlight, and I’m wondering if there’s any laws against using a flashlight? Since my car battery is dead and I’m waiting for money for a jumper box I walk to work. I walk in the dark and I shine it in alleyways, around peoples cars, inside peoples cars, across the street, pretty much places where people may or may not be hiding. I’m most likely going to be attacked coming across a car, or around a house or building and in between houses and alleyways. I use the technique shown below.
Would there be any issues doing that? I turn the flash light on, search and then move.
I’m not aware of any laws against flashlight usage. In fact, I encourage people to have one because a high lumen flashlight can be a very good tool*.
Be careful though you don’t look like a criminal scoping out cars and the like.
* Imagine, if you will… A woman walking through a parking garage. Someone seems to be following her, setting off her creep alarm. But she doesn’t know for sure they are following… maybe his car is also parked nearby. You can’t draw your firearm, and there isn’t quite enough cause to just give a dose of pepper spray. So how do you remove ambiguity? Shine a really bright light at the person and yell “ARE YOU FOLLOWING ME?”. You can tell a lot by their response and whether you need to grab that pepper spray/firearm or just say “sorry!”. Better to be thought a weirdo than have an un-warranted assault on your hands.
Nah it’s nothing like a going up to a window and looking inside a vehicle it’s a oh I’m walking up to a vehicle, push the light on the car for maybe a second just to see if anybody’s in the vehicle and turn it off.
A lady looked at me suspicious when I just was walking down the street flashing alley ways, flashing inside cars and just being situationally aware and questioned me. I just told her I was being situational aware. I shine it in between houses making sure nobody is in alleyways, nobodies hiding anywhere they may attack me, and I’m flashing them at a distance and only lighting areas up for a second at a time.
shining a light into cars with limo tint doesn’t help.
The video or even the article you provided only shows the importance of not walking through confined spaces like two vehicles parked next to each other. Why? So you don’t happen to end up like the guy in the video where he was walking between 2 cars and the suspect in the car was waiting and ready for him with a gun already out. You and your flashlight won’t help in that case anymore than it would if someone was waiting around the corner with their gun ready and you came around the corner. I love logic and reason and you lack both in your argument.
Now there are things you can do that I’d completely recommend. Don’t walk between cars. Stay in lit areas in parking garages and don’t park next to large columns where someone might hide. Walk near the front or back of vehicles (never between) so that if something pops up you can take cover. Etc etc etc. These are reasonable and logical. Walking around shining your light into cars draws attention to YOU. It also might expose you to threats that are conducting things they don’t want you to see and you and your light might piss them off and force their hand to respond to you.
I have a dumb ass question for those that ridicule using a flashlight in the dark. What is a flashlight for???
If you want to mitigate people looking at you suspiciously for being out in the dark with a flashlight (it does seem like one of those things that might make you go ‘hmmmmm’) consider combining it with a florescent striped vest or jacket. This of course depends upon your neighborhood since it could actually make you more of a target in ‘less lawful’ regions.
My point was that walking around shining a light into cars is suspicious and could result in creating problems. Just to take the logic to the extreme…if I was walking down a sidewalk shining my light into houses and try to justify that I fear someone may be inside ready to come out and do me harm…that’s excessive and invasive. If he walked down and shined his light into a car where a couple was making out and the guy got pissed thinking he was invading their privacy, who is justified in that case? What if someone was doing drugs or having sex in the car and him shining his light in exposed that? Think it wouldn’t create an issue and if he was forced to defend himself…don’t you think that someone might argue he had no business looking into other people’s property?
I’m not a lawyer but even I wouldn’t care for someone shining their light in my car if I was in there for some innocent reason. I’d wonder what the hell the person was doing also.
I carry a light at night, but I don’t shine it in people’s personal property like cars or homes because I recognize that it could create more problems than it might solve. That’s my point.