Be aware when answering the front door

By: Stanley N. Williams

I guess that I forgot to send you information about another police alert that is potentially serious. Last Saturday evening, in the dark, someone pounded so severely on our front door that it made us think that there might be some safety crisis in progress. That wasn’t true but it was how a 30-something man who claimed to be deaf got our attention. He showed me a index card-size green note that he was deaf and soliciting contributions. It didn’t show any affiliation with any organization. I say that he claimed to be deaf because I was surprised with how immediately he understand what I said and responded. I told him that I don’t support any request unless it is from an organization that I know exists and solicitation was not legal for the neighborhood. His response is the significant matter. He became very angry and stormed away although he didn’t do anything clearly threatening.
On Monday morning, I saw two Tempe police cars parked on street opposite our house at 32 E 14th. Two police officers were going house to house apparently wanting to ask questions but it happened that there were no responses at those places. I and several neighbors went out to ask the police officers about the situation. They told us about this deaf man and how we has called 911, using the TDY system, on several days at 5 or 6 AM to report that he had been assaulted. He told the dispatcher there should be a police SWAT sent to the crisis. The officers told us that they had not been able to find a source for the calls.
They told us to be cautious about this man, not open the door, or approach him. I remember him being about 5′ 9″ tall, dark wavy hair not long enough to cover his ears, and a dark complexion that wasn’t like that of a Hispanic or African American person.
If anyone sees this man, the officers want to receive a call immediately. There was no record of him having been physically threatening but his behavior was of significant concern.
— Stanley N. Williams
Professor of Volcanology
School of Earth and Space Exploration
Arizona State University
Tempe, AZ 85287-1404 USA