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Is 'Aggressive Panhandling' a Problem in Royal Oak?

A number of Royal Oak Patch users expressed concern about this issue. Do you feel the same way?

Credit: Eli Christman via flickr.com
Credit: Eli Christman via flickr.com
Earlier this week, we reached out on the Royal Oak Patch Facebook page to find out what issues in town need to be addressed. We received a number of comments and messages on the issue of panhandling.

Royal Oak Patch user Kim D. wrote the following message on the issue:

My concern is the new onset of aggressive panhandling in the 13 & Woodward area. I have lived in this city for most of my 44 years & until now it has never been as bad. I was stopping into Kroger today when a woman came up to me near my car asking me to buy her pork chops & bread because her food stamps have run out followed by a young man that has been at the corner with a homeless sign for a few weeks trying to get my attention. Fun fact, he is a friend of my neighbors grand daughter & is actually a heroin junkie & not homeless. Why are these same people not a mile up the road in Birmingham? What can we do to to get this back under control?


Royal Oak Patch Facebook user Ann Greenough Kozlowski addressed the topic as well, writing: "Panhandlers in the median on Woodward. Just move to the SIDE of the road." Six users liked Kozlowski's comment.

Do you feel that panhandling is a significant issue in Royal Oak? Let us know in the comments below.

michelleabc June 28, 2014 at 07:16 AM
Yes it's a problem! The person at Main and 696 is there every day. I wish the panhandling restrictions would come back. I'm not heartless and there but for the grace of God go I. But should I have to roll up my car windows and make sure my doors are locked while driving in Royal Oak?! NO!
Royal Oaker June 28, 2014 at 12:42 PM
A woman in the Kroger parking lot at 13 and Woodward, drove her car up to me with a sad child inside, as I was getting into my car, asked me to buy her food for her children. A woman at 15 and Woodward approached my car as I was leaving a store, for bus money to get back to Detroit as daughters car broke down in Pontiac. 3 different people at different times approached me for gas money in the parking lot of 12 mile and John R, one carrying a oil container. Birmingham does have pan handlers as I have seen them on Old Woodward going into the trash receptacles. I was chased on 11 mile by Main by a young man asking if I lived around there and if I had a man. It's too the point I no longer want to go out anymore. I see that I will have to start carrying.
RON Ostrodamus June 28, 2014 at 01:45 PM
Nancy, NO matter WHAT your problem is your elected RO officials always have an answer involving a reason to do NOTHING! Cracking down on aggressive panhandling which is defined as approaching people and asking them for money is NOT an issue for the ACLU! If it was as the old saying goes: "if wishes were horses beggars would ride" and the courts would be flooded with homeless litigants. Even the ACLU has better things to do. All too often robbers, and even worse use this approach to scope out a victim to see if he or she is vulnerable and some can be very intimidating. In any case asking the police to do this job does not bring in any money to the city, and could even cost the city money in court and detention of someone who simply does not care, or have the money to pay a fine for disorderly, or loitering. So this commission passes the buck as it usually does in any situation that does not involve beer, or political favors. It was Lincoln who once said there are more horses asses than horses in Washington. Not just Washington apparently.
nofuture June 28, 2014 at 02:04 PM
I drive through this intersection twice a day. I've spoken to the 20-ish "travelers." They are junkies. They nod off while talking to you, needle tracks and all. My experience is that they are never far from the dope man. It's not exactly NSA level police work to solve this. Or just wait. They will OD or graduate to B&E or Armed Robbery before long.
RON Ostrodamus June 29, 2014 at 05:41 PM
In back of Leo's there was a young man sitting on the stairs leading up to the Yoga studio. Could not help but notice his arms and hands shaking. When his friend came out he stood up normally, and walked normally. Before he looked as if he was going through a classic case of some kind of withdrawal. I have observed that drugs used to be a serious problem in this town not so long ago. Everything from H to coke to vicodin was available. I agree with the last comment that other more serious crimes are related, and more likely the problem will get worse before it gets better. There is sadly little motivation to help junkies, or go after the dealers, and this is the problem in many cities.

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