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A Spare Change Guy warning

He's not just some innocent, if annoying, crank, he's a scary and potentially violent sexual harasser, duffless2323 warns:

... I have personally been harrased by him on 2 different occasions, a few years apart. I also saw him say some very violent and sexually explicit things to another young woman who was by herself until I turned the corner, I then walked with her and he went back to the spare change routine. She was very relieved someone came along. ...

Also, he's discovered Somerville.

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Comments

That is really very insensitive. You don't know what is causing him to act that way, and he may have had a horrible childhood or be disabled. Who are we to judge? It is society's fault that he is acting this way, and we need to spend more money on programs.

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The original poster is just commenting on observed behavior, and suggesting that people stay away from him and/or be careful around him, based on what seems to be harassing/threatening behavior. It's actually quite impressive that people in the thread are being respectful and discussing the situation in terms of protecting their own interests, without getting into sentiments about wishing harm upon the guy. I don't think this is insensitive.

I do wonder if it could be helpful to him for someone to file a complaint with the police that he's making harassing remarks to strangers. This seems to point to someone who has psychosis rather than just being an all-out asshole. It might be helpful for him if he could get some treatment in a hospital instead of this reported cycle of getting routinely tossed in jail for panhandling, lather, rinse, repeat.

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Insensitive? Oh, shut the fuck up.

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second that shut the fuck up!

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It appears you both may have had horrible childhoods or be disabled. As a member of society, I take full responsibility. I wish there were a program I could recommend.

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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have you ever encountered this guy? he is a pain in the ass. im sorry that anyone has to be homeless but it doe not make them less of an asshole.this guy is a jerk.

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So, the guy's annoyed you. I'm sorry to hear that. But how's labeling him and name-calling helping him, or anyone? Wouldn't it be more constructive to point out to him that he called you names totally unprovoked, and mention that you don't appreciate it?*

Otherwise, if you don't intend to do anything helpful for him, just walk away, and save your commentary. It's not as if he specifically sought you out as the target of his jerky comments. If you can't say something nice...

(*A lot of people with untreated mental illness are pretty unaware of how they're coming across, or what other people really did or did not do, or that their actions affect other people, or that other people are even separate from themselves).

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I have just discovered the "spare change guy" string and tags here for the first time. I too was accosted by him years ago, and need to chime in that we are not talking about someone simply "annoying" young women- his comments qualified as sexual predation. Not a simple "cat call", which I can certainly handle and brush off, but really vile explicit and threatening.

If there were a police officer nearby at the time I would have reported it, but at the time it shook me up and I just wanted to get out of the neighborhood. Years later, my heart starts racing when I see this guy around- I don't think of myself as "thin skinned", it's just an instinctive reaction!

Yes, we must have compassion for the homeless and mentally ill, but it's a valid warning to suggest young women steer clear of him.

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Unfortunately, our system is largely set up so that he'd need to be arrested in order to have much of a chance at getting some mental health treatment. Or would need to make an appointment at a health center, keep it, show up, and happen to get someone who's versed in treating people with the kinds of issues I suspect he has. The odds aren't usually great that people with severe untreated mental illness can follow through like that, because if they had the skills to do it and the understanding of how it could benefit them, why wouldn't they have done it already? The system is set up so that a lot of the people with more serious issues fall through. It's geared toward us "normal" folk who can make and keep appointments. Who need service a lot less than many people.

Fortunately and unfortunately, it sounds like he's now making the kinds of comments that will get him some help once he's arrested -- arrests for stuff like aggressive panhandling and being drunk and whatnot doesn't usually get people help, but arrests for sexually harassing comments usually will get someone an evaluation.

My suggestion for people who encounter him would be to try to work with the police department and file a complaint that he's sexually harassed you, and tell them you only want to press charges that will likely result in him getting some help.

It sometimes works, sometimes doesn't, but is definitely more effective than cowardly anonymi calling him names on a message board. As for getting the anonymi help, well, Suldog, I think you're on your own for that one. ;o)

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