TACOMA — Whether you live in a condo or a house, experts say there are things you can do even before you pull into the garage that could save your life.
Sky Terrace Condominiums is both private and large but that didn’t deter two men from tailing Larry Howse into his garage. Tacoma police say the two thieves robbed Howse, then killed him Saturday night in the 200 block of Broadway in downtown Tacoma.
The attack happened shortly before 10 p.m and the suspects got away from the northside of the garage.
“I’m really worried about my wife,” said Tacoma resident Matthew Downing.
The random attack has Downing looking over his shoulder every time he enters his garage.
“I sit there and wait because my garage door takes some time to close,” said Downing.
That fear, experts say, should motivate everyone to be aware of their surroundings even before you get to your garage.
“When the garage door opens don’t enter immediately,” said Black Tiger tactical self-defense expert Abdul Mohamed.
Lock your door, turn off the music and listen.
“I like to leave my windows a little bit down because I want to hear for any noise,” said Mohamed.
If you share a garage with other tenants, scan the space before you park.
“I am going to make sure no one is behind me, I am checking my mirrors as I drive in. You need to look closer at the vehicles that are already parked inside the garage,” said Mohamed.
If you can, back your car into the parking space and only turn off the ignition once the garage door is closed.
“We don’t recommend you get out of the vehicle,” said Mohamed.
That way, should an attack happen, you can use your car as a weapon to get away, something Howse never got to do.
“We do put our guards down when we pull in,” said Downing.
From now on, Downing says, he will always be hyper vigilant.
Experts say listen to your instincts. If you feel like someone is tailing you, just drive away and don’t enter the garage. Come back around and park when you feel the threat is gone.
Police say there was a surveillance camera inside the garage but it does not clearly show the suspects.
If anyone saw anything suspicious Saturday night, you are asked to call Tacoma Police Department.