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 Art of the Lift

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Stephen Hannaway

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PostSubject: Pickpoceting   Sun Aug 05, 2012 6:30 pm

Before I do it, does anyone actually want to learn this skill? Not sure what the practical value of it would be for you unless you were a detective archetype Razz
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Blue Rattler

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Aug 05, 2012 6:37 pm

I'd be interested. I actually wrote a post about this the other day. I debated about whether I should put that down as a skill, but decided I should.

http://superheromanifesto.blogspot.com/2012/08/superpowers-you-can-develop.html

I think most of those can be used for good (which was my criteria for putting them down). So yes, I'd be interested.
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Ninja

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Aug 05, 2012 6:38 pm

Laughing a lock picking pickpocket Cool
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Gadgetastic!



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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Aug 05, 2012 7:59 pm

Let's think about this for a second. Life is not like the movies. Even if you are a cop you are not allowed to pickpocket someone. Evidence must be collected in a clear and detailed method to be considered legal for any purpose. Evidence must be kept in a VERY detailed chain of custody. If you, as just some guy in a mask, pickpocket the hand of a missing child from the inside pocket of a murderer's trench coat, you have just guaranteed that sicko will not be prosecuted. If you pickpocket a kilo bag of cocaine from the pocket of a dealer, you have just eliminated that bag as evidence for a conviction.

What people don't often realize is that even if you are a well known celebrity magician, if you pickpocket someone on the street, even if you then turn around to offer it back, you could theoretically, still be prosecuted if the victim doesn't find it as funny as you do.

Pick-pocketing has no value for an RLSH unless you plan on being the type that willfully breaks the law and interferes with police investigations to seek vigilante "justice." If this is the case then you should most certainly not post this on these forums.
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Blue Rattler

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Aug 05, 2012 8:35 pm

Good point, Gadgetastic. But here's what I was thinking:

I think this knowledge could have some merit. If we understand how a criminal thinks, then perhaps it triggers some thought on how to prevent this crime.

Maybe it leads to one of us inventing some kind of pickpocket proof device, that sells for millions! Or at the least, helps out some folks.

Maybe it's a simple as one of us going up to a potential mark and letting them know they're susceptible to a pickpocket attack.
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Ninja

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Aug 05, 2012 8:51 pm

Blue Rattler wrote:
Good point, Gadgetastic. But here's what I was thinking:

I think this knowledge could have some merit. If we understand how a criminal thinks, then perhaps it triggers some thought on how to prevent this crime.

This is half true...but most pickpockets are opportunist thieves and the ones who work in gangs would need multiple "hero's" to catch. If you want to catch pickpockets just walk down the street with your wallet in your back pocket! Laughing Laughing

Blue Rattler wrote:
Maybe it leads to one of us inventing some kind of pickpocket proof device, that sells for millions! Or at the least, helps out some folks.

Cool Zips or Velcro! Laughing

Blue Rattler wrote:
Maybe it's a simple as one of us going up to a potential mark and letting them know they're susceptible to a pickpocket attack.

Idea This is a good idea! I have read before of a guy who reverse pickpockets an leaves a calling card telling them they could have been robbed but that now he's a thief gone good Laughing
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Equal

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Mon Aug 06, 2012 1:26 am

Pickpockets are proffesionals that work in teams. When you notice your wallet is gone, the guy who posseses it haven't been near you. It's a good idea to learn their tactics, but see no other use for their skill but stage entertainment.
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Stephen Hannaway

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Mon Aug 06, 2012 3:51 am

Yeah... see that's why I'm asking :/ Wasn't sure how a hero would use it legally... I also just noticed I spelled pick pocketing wrong, cant seem to edit it any more either. Ah well it was late.

Anyway! What If i did a post explaining all the more common approaches, moves, distraction, as well as the likely targets of pickpockets rather than a how to? And then anyone that still wants Instruction in it can contact me privately.

I'll just delete this topic an start a new one in training if that's that case. What do you guys think?
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Ninja

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:22 am

Id like to know what you know! I mean Ive looked into it a fair bit but its good to see another approach and maybe you know something Ive never heard of!

still not sure how it would help a RLSH but maybe someone might come up with a legit reason...if not then just a little fun with friends and family Smile
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E0N (Inactive)

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:09 am

Could be valuable to be able to spot pickpockets.

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Stephen Hannaway

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Mon Aug 06, 2012 10:19 am

i'll do that then
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Arpenteur

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Aug 07, 2012 2:30 am

Thank to you Magician.
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grayghost

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:26 am

Very good skill. I know it and i practice on friends. But i would use it to disarm an enemy without him relising
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Rook

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:53 am

There is no such thing as wasted knowledge. I'd love to learn what you have to share.
-Rook
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Silver Sentinel

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:08 am

The wife, Golden Valkyrie, and myself have trained/studied pickpockets so that we can spot them in crowds. We provide extra security (we're the neighborhood watch in our town) at festivals, and street events.

All you need to do is learn how pickpockets work, how they choose and approach their targets, and what they may do afterward. You don't actually have to pick pockets for these skills to be valuable. I've written more than one article on pickpockets and shoplifters that have been useful training aids.

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Silver Sentinel

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:18 am

Pickpocketing is easy money for those who ply their trade, and ply it well. Knowing how pickpockets work is the first step in protecting yourself from them. It also helps you learn how to spot them easier as well.

Pay attention to your valuables whenever someone stops you to ask the time, bumps into you, drops items on the ground in front of you, or generally attempts to momentarily distract you. Pickpockets often work in pairs. One distracts while the other does the actual picking. If the target discovers something is amiss, they usually confront the bait person who obviously doesn't have the target's possessions, and then goes free. The target can suspect the baiter is working with someone, but has no proof.

When in public, usually in an area with plenty of foot traffic, and or crowds, note individuals who seem to be signaling each other. Often they will not appear to be together. Pay attention to behavior, not appearances! One might be dressed as a business man, while another is dressed like a student. Pickpockets often use children, or women in their schemes. Few people would not stop to help a lady in distress, or a child asking a question. You can't have preconceived notions if you are to catch these criminals at their game.

If you're on a train, watch for someone leaving a car by one door, only to re-enter another. Look out for two people that enter separate cars, signaling one another, or taking up positions where they can cover the other. Watch someone who sits next to someone sleeping, or who has a bag, brief case, or other carry on, as they might get up at a stop and slip away with the other person's item unnoticed.

Watch for two people having a conversation, only to split up and then later reconnect. Watch for surreptitious hand offs, of quick passing motions (often mistaken for hand shakes). In this day and age, even watch for people nodding to each other while texting. Generally keep an eye out for people who may be teamed up, even if they're not side by side.

Sit in a mall, or a train, and watch.. just watch. You'll begin to note who is watching who. Don't watch directly, but use sunglasses, or look at reflections in windows. These are also tools the pickpockets use, so note who is using them that way.

------------------------------------------

http://www.pickpocket.com/Pickpocket-Prevention-Tips.asp

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About: Silver Sentinel is a security professional, licensed through the State of New York, and has received training in PPCT, Defensive Tactics, First Aid, I.C. Response, Haz-Mat Responder, Search & Rescue, MERT, CERT, Counter-Terrorism (not as fancy or cool as it sounds), and other skills through his job and activities as a community volunteer.
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Arpenteur

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:27 am

Thanks for your tips Silver Sentinel, always so helpfull.
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Gauge



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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:43 am

It's helpful to know the how of pick pocketing, but more important is the how of choosing a mark, and the precursor behaviors of the crime. Knowing these two things will help you identify possible victims, as well as help determine whether there is a likelihood they're about to be victimized.
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Stephen Hannaway

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PostSubject: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:55 pm

Hello Ladies and Gents... Been a while hasn't it. I'm re posting this as an unfortunate symptom of my dyslexia means I misspelled the title of my last post of pick pocketing and thus, I feel, some what invalidates the actual content Smile

Okay so what I'm thinking for this “skills post” is a two parter, Part one on the generic prevention of being picked and also how to spot one in action, and Part two going in depth on the actual techniques used for those that wish to learn a little about how to actually perform these feats. The reason for this is that my skill sets often split people down the middle, some finding no practical value to a RLSH; others feel that the techniques can be applied to RLSH work as well as crime. If I do it this way it satisfies both groups.

Part one:

Picking pockets, without the mark noticing anything, is an art. It employs a great deal of skill, dexterity, mental fortitude and even an understanding of basic psychology that must be combined and executed in an instant in a constantly varying dynamic environment. Clearly not your average mugger!

As a former dipper myself and from discussions with friends I’ve come to realise that the general public have a lot of misguided views on pick pocketing and far too many believe that there is no way to lift a wallet from a pocket without them noticing. They are gravely wrong!

How Pickpockets operate:

Contrary to the Hollywood perception of the Pickpocket, rarely do they work alone. Crews, or duo’s (pickpocket and apprentice) are far more common. This is because like a magician sleight of hand of hand often needs to be complimented with a health does of misdirection. So while the attractive young lady in the slightly revealing top is asking you to help her with her bags, the old lady you never noticed has just lifted your wallet. Of course this is just one of a near infinite number ways to perform a lift however you’ll find that a Pickpocket will usually exploit two psychological flaws when performing a lift:


  1. A person finds it difficult to concentrate on more than one thing at a time.
  2. The sensation of a greater force can neutralize that of a lesser force.


Coupled with some form of misdirection this can lead to a sort of blackout in the mind where the brain is unable to detect the lift due to the overwhelming sensation and the distracting stimuli. It need only take a second.
A Pickpocket can determine the location of a wallet in two ways. Looking from a distance at the symmetry of the clothing, wallets bulge (at least the ones a pickpocket wants do Razz ) and so can cause subtle deformations in clothing that is noticeable from the opposite side of the mark. My marks were usually either the hipster type, wearing the tight fit designer clothes or the suited business men. For the first I’d look for slight bulging in the jean pockets corners for the second I’d look for deformations in the suit jackets lining where the weight of the wallet pulled the inside pocket down. Secondly they can perform a physical “brush” of the main pocket areas with their palms to determine a location. This id followed by a stronger physical distraction and then the lift.

What Pickpockets look like:

Anyone and everyone. Young & old, fat & thin, a pickpocket can take any form. In addition to this they are experts at blending in as such can circle marks unseen until the lift after which they fade back into the crowd. As such it is much easier to watch for locations and signs of where a Pickpocket is most likely to strike. Quite simply there are 3, Public Landmarks, public transport, and public retail. Obvious really. Another thing you can watch out for is signs warning of pickpockets, these are ironically used by the pickpockets to determine the location of a wallet as when most people heed this warning they pat their wallet to check it’s there, informing the world of it’s location.

How to sink a lift:

A to a skilled crew almost no pocket is unpickable, however unlike muggers they are often professionals and will as such try for the softer targets to ensure a higher success rate. Meaning by simply making it more challenging you can remove yourself as a target for them.
Here’s a short FAQ, follow it to the letter and you'll hopefully never find yourself a victim of this crime:

What’s the safest pocket?
The tightest one in your trousers, or an inside jacket pocket.

What if I button it, or if it has a Velcro flap? Is that safe?
Safer, but not safe enough. It requires an extra step by the pickpocket, and that’s good. But if he has the extra moment or the right opportunity, your goodies are gone.

The cargo pocket, then, on the outside of the leg. Good, right?
Sorry, no. We’ve seen pickpockets who specialize in cargo pockets.

What about pockets with inner zippers?
Better. Much better.

But I’d feel it if someone stuck his hand in my pocket!
Think so? Even in a crowd, smashed against strangers? Think elevator, store sale, concert, sports event. Think you’d feel it if you were in motion? Think of a packed train, walking across a busy intersection, a revolving door.

But I’d feel it if someone stuck his hand in my pocket!
Okay, perhaps. But a pickpocket doesn’t usually stick his hand in anyway.

Then how does he get the wallet out?
There are many methods. He might crimp the pocket lining so loose cash rises to the top. He might lift the wallet from below on the outside of the pocket. He might use a tool, like tongs. He might slice the pocket with a razor or scissors, or rip it right off the pants. Some heavyset men have front pockets so loose you can see right down to their depths.

I’m hyper-aware. I don’t believe it could happen to me. I’d know it.
Yes, you might know it. But the thief might grab and run. Do you want to chase him? Want to run into a dark alley? Know who’s waiting for you around the corner?

How do these thieves know where my wallet is?
At a distance, they look for the four corners of it in your trouser pocket, or for the weight and bulk of it that ruins the fall of a nicely-cut jacket. Close up, he fans you. He, or a partner, will brush against you lightly to feel where your wallet is. He might also watch as you return your wallet to your pocket, or watch you pat your pocket to be sure it’s there.

You keep saying him. Are pickpockets always male?
No, and the females can be tricky to identify. But wait—we’re only talking pockets here. Female pickpockets have a few additional super-tactile methods not available to the average male thief.

Heh, heh, here’s an old trick I learned: I wrap a rubber band around my wallet!
Yeah, they know that one, and they like it. Pickpockets tell us that rubber bands make the wallet easier to grip, and keep it nicely compact so the corners are less apt to snag.

What’s the worst place?
A fat wallet protruding from a back pocket is a magnet to a pickpocket. “Like a gift,” a thief in Prague told me. “We call it …˜the other man’s pocket,’” a Russian thief revealed; “the sucker pocket,” said another. “Tourists make it too easy,” complained one.

(Exasperated:) Alright, then where should I keep my valuables?
In a pouch under your clothes. Stow it safely and you won’t have to focus on it.

What should I keep in my pocket?
“Give-up money.” A small or moderate amount you can throw to the ground if you’re mugged. You can also use it for small purchases without having to dig into your pouch.

Anything I should not keep in my pocket?
Definitely not your Social Security number, but we all know that by now. Not chocolate, either Smile
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Stephen Hannaway

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 2:02 pm

Whew... that took a while Very Happy Part two coming soon!

Again sorry to the admins for the shift of page. Also, I saw you post Silver Sential, Was good stuff, I would really like for you to post it again here, maybe even get some input, or success stories that you or your lady have had, thanks Smile

So yeah, I'll try and get that second part rattled out for tomorrow, I know it's a crime but You still have to appreciate the sheer art of it :/ I may not be much in a fight but you take me on you'll be pennyless before you hit the ground! Razz

I hope you're finding this helpful!
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adamm[]

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:25 pm

im poor and dont have money, i am invincible !! cheers
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Stephen Hannaway

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:29 pm

* RED LIGHT & BUZZER * OOHHHHHHHH I'm sorry sir the correct answer was "Although i may not possess a great deal of weath, especially in liquid form, any personal details could be used to conduct Identity Theft which is worth a great deal of money"

Just playing Smile But the points valid, ID theft is a rising crime around the world.
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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Wed Oct 24, 2012 5:01 pm

Somebody tried to pickpocket me in Tijuana once. Affectionately referred to as TJ around here. I was already aware of how shady TJ was so I kept my wallet in my left inner jacket pocket. Sure enough walking down the street a guy bumps into me and I can feel his hand reaching for my right pants pocket. Amateur.

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Rook

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Oct 28, 2012 4:37 pm

I generally wear my wallet in a front pocket and occasionally have to struggle to get it out. I've been taking my own wallet out of my own pocket for years and haven't quite mastered it. I don't doubt that a skilled pickpocket can succeed in such a case, I'm just curious as to how.

-Rook
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Rook

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PostSubject: Re: Art of the Lift   Sun Oct 28, 2012 4:38 pm

Thanks for the info and guidance, BTW!
-Rook
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