The line between caution and helpfulness

Published 7:00 am Friday, May 13, 2016

As police officers continue to look for the fourth suspect in an alleged armed robbery said to have taken place last week, some people may be considering how much, if any, aid they would provide to those who ask for it.
According to the alleged victim, the story began with a simple request for cigarettes. Once one of the suspects acquired tobacco products, a second suspect came calling.
Instead of denying the second request for help, the alleged victim walked with the two females to a local gas station to purchase cigarettes. For his help, he and his son were allegedly robbed at gunpoint, relieved of what valuables they had on them at the time, allegedly by two male accomplices of the females.
It’s difficult to discern the intentions of any one person at any given time. Are they really in need of help, or are they trying to find out what valuables are available that can be taken?
Some people may take such concerns to the extreme, denying aid to even the most worthy. While in other instances, such as the one described, they may become unwitting victims.
There are bad, and good, people everywhere. Fortunately Picayune and Pearl River County have more good people than bad. And while there are certainly those who could use a helping hand from time to time, be cautious, but not too much so.
There’s not a 100 percent accurate way to determine if someone really needs help, but by using your best judgment when considering an act of kindness, you may well avoid becoming a victim yourself.

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