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Mugged in Paris Metro.

Mugged in Paris Metro.

Old Feb 1, 05, 6:13 pm
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Mugged in Paris Metro.

Has anyone been a victim of robbery in the Metro? We were there last weekend. I will post the details later. I was held down on an escalator while my wallet was separated from me. In the end it all worked out since I did get my wallet back.
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Old Feb 1, 05, 6:30 pm
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OMG, I hope you're all right. I've heard of this happening during off hours, in deserted corridors and such... How did you get your wallet back ???
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Old Feb 1, 05, 7:48 pm
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Very sad to hear this. But it's really good news you didn't get hurt.
I try to avoid Paris metro after dark, especially any RER line. I have French friends and tourist friends who got pickpocketed or mugged, even during the day. I hear stories - both personal and in the news. I either take a taxi or just walk.

I have been robbed years ago in Tokyo, mind you. My bag containing lots of personal things - gone. A hand from a car took it. It took some time to get rid of the memory. So I hope you have a nice cup of tea (or whatever comforts you) and are able to relax, but don't worry if it takes some time to process. You didn't get hurt, that's the most important imho.
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Old Feb 1, 05, 11:59 pm
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I am glad you were reunited with your wallet, but it is scary.

This is quite timely for me as I'm trying to decide whether to spend the night at the CDG Hyatt before my flight or try and schlep to the airport v. early.

I was going to take the RER, but maybe I'll take the Air France Bus instead.

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Old Feb 2, 05, 1:18 am
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Yaatri - I am sad to hear this. Hope you and yours are ok and not too traumatized.

Speaking of the RER - those stations are creepy even in the daytime. I've never even thought of anything bad happening in the Metro, however (other than having to be vigilant about pick-pockets).
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Old Feb 2, 05, 9:04 am
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Glad you are okay. I havent been mugged on the rail system there but a Parisian friend of mine got roughed up and his notebook computer bag stolen on the train from CDG to Paris. I had a French gentleman warn me I was about to get pickpocketed on the Metro once. It was pretty crowded and he noticed and essentially broke up the attempt. Ive been pretty vigilant since and dont take it at night.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 10:31 am
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It was about 7:00 P.M. when we were switiching from line 10 to line 6 at La Motte Pickcquet Grenelle to go back to our hotel. I kept my wife and children ahead of me in my view on the up escalator. We must have been the last bonafide passegers on the escalator. I looked back, there were two or three young men behind me. I moved to the right to let them pass in case they wanted to. My personal expereince has been that tourists or occasional travellers usually hog the entire width of an escaltor preventing people in a hurry from getting to their destination. My wallet was in my hip pocket of my jeans. As I got to the top of the escalator, my wife and children alreasdy having got off and turned round the corner into the tunnel leading to line 6. One or two guys, now I can't remeber, walked around me and sgtreched it arm across my midrif to hold the handrail preventing me from getting off. The guy was facing down and was able to keep himself upright with his footwork as the top rung of the escalator disppeared underneath the fixed part of the escalator. He was pointing at some cards, credit cards or metro cards, which I knew were not mine. I just wanted to get off but I couldn't since I was physically being held down physically. I thought, he was tryuing to pick up what he had dropped but seeing that he was making no effort to pick it up made me wonder what he was upto. It must have been during that time when he, or his accomplice got my wallet. I had to jump in tandem with the escalator to keep myself from falling face forward While I was struggling to get free. My wife came back to see what had happened since I had not cuaght up with them, Both, she and my son pulled us both off the escalaotr thinking we were stuck. Immediatedly afterwards she asked me to check my pocket for the wallet, which was, ofcourse gone. My wife and my 12 yr old son hung on to the guy as she was yelling, "call the police, call the police". Hearing all the commotion, a few pax came back, including a guy who handed me my wallet. He thought I was offering him a reward, but I wasn't since I wasn't sure if he was one of the accomplices or a good samaritan. I was just checking to make sure all my credit cards and the cash was there. Nothing was missing. The guy who had held me down managed to free himself and ran down the same up escalator we had come up on. I can't be sure, but I think the accomplice who had the wallet came back thinking he couldn't get away.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 11:18 am
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Originally Posted by Yaatri
My wallet was in my hip pocket of my jeans.
The hip pocket of your jeans!!!???
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Old Feb 2, 05, 11:41 am
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Talking Front pants pocket not safe either.

I got my wallet lifted out of front pants pocket. I just stepped on a crowded metro, my spouse saw a man step in behind me, then back off just as the doors closed.

I missed it 10-15 minutes later when I tried to make a purchase. I never saw it again. Cancelled credit cards, used spouse's cash, borrowed from our friends (they are still friends) and had a great time.

If you read anything about traveling in Paris, there is plenty of warning about pickpockets - and there are signs all over in museums, metros, ane even Versailles. But I still felt real stupid. I carried minimum in my wallet -- ID, one credit card, some cash. Nothing else.

Next time, we really spread our money around. Both wore money belts, put money in socks, put hands in pocket around wallet on Metro. Carried minimum cash.

Friend put his hand in his pocket and found another hand coming out! Again, man just stepped off train and door closed.

These are the experts --- but I love the metro and love Paris.

I sure wouldn't have fought him or tried to restrain him. That can get you injured, and for what?

Glad it turned out well for you.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 12:12 pm
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Originally Posted by slawecki
The hip pocket of your jeans!!!???
I know people tel you not to keep your wallwet in your back pocket. But that's where I like mine to be. I grew up in a big city and am aware of petty crime. I do realise keeping the wallet there is an advertisemnt. But in this situation even having it in my front pockets would not have changed the outcome had they chosen to victimise me.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 12:45 pm
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Sad to hear that it happened. The same thing happened to my father. Glad that you got your wallet back.

I would personally NEVER carry my wallet in my back pocket on the metro. I put it there when I am in my own neighborhood but not when I get in the metro. The one time I forgot to move it to the front in the metro someone tried to pick my pocket. They didnt get it fortunately.

I think carrying your wallet in your back pocket is just asking for it and it does make a difference. It is more visible to others and you have less control of what is going on.

The dropped item on the escalator is an old trick. I try to never allow a group of people to get in front of and behind me at the same time on an escalator. I usually just walk up them which helps avoid this problem. It does sound like it all happened very fast for you so you probably could not have avoided them.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 1:02 pm
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Yaatri probably figured with those tight jeans, it wouldn't be a problem.

When I started traveling a lot a couple of years ago, I stopped carrying a wallet. I got one of those leather money clips that have a window for an id and space for a couple of credit cards and carry it in my front pocket. It certainly makes it more difficult for a pickpocket, since most of the time I wear jeans. However, it's true if you are stopped by a couple of guys and threatened, it doesn't matter where you carry your money.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 1:56 pm
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Ah, yes. The classic "drop-something-on-the-escalator" sandwich trick. Sorry to hear that happened to you! I've lived in Paris for a number of years and was lucky to have never lost anything to pick-pockets despite several attempts.

Once, while stepping off an escalator in the metro, the gentleman behind me stumbled and fell into me. I thought he had just tripped. We exchanged niceties and carried on our way. Later, upon arriving home, I noticed that my fanny-pack's belt had nearly been sliced through and was hanging on for dear life with a few strands of thread. Thank goodness, the fanny-pack went out of style (if it was ever "in" to begin with).

Other popular attempts have included: a man shoving his way in-front of me into the turnstiles, the sandwich trick that happened to Yaatri, and blatantly reaching into my front suitcoat jacket while I was sitting in the metro. The last one was the most stupid attempt. I mean, HELLO!, I'm looking right at you.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 2:08 pm
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Leave stuff at hotel

I'm glad some people keep their wallets easily accessible by pickpockets. This makes it easier for those of us who are more careful as we are not such easy targets.

I leave virtually everything in the hotel, except on initial arrival/departure, including passport. Cash for day in shirt pocket. Credit card (1) and more cash in money belt.

So far, so good, with no pickpocketing experience in many years of travel.
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Old Feb 2, 05, 2:21 pm
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Wink Play it safe.

I always leave non essentials in the hotel safe. My wallet goes in my front pocket. To date, I have yet to have a wallet stolen.
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