Most of us have have seen foot surveillance. At least, on the big screen…
Not too much in the movies – because it’s boring! Notice, they rarely film foot surveillance scenes outside of congested city centers. That’s because it’s next to impossible. If you are the only two persons on the block, it’s bound to be obvious.
Back in the day, I was tasked to perform surveillance on a residential home in central Phoenix. A couple blocks South of a main street, in the middle of town. Nice, older neighborhood. Built in the 40s and 50s – I know, not old for you New Englanders!
The problem was, with little or no automobile traffic, scant foot traffic, and many folks at home during the day, parking near the home was a big red flag. You were bound to have someone call the police on you if you were just sitting alone in your car for any length of time.
My solution was to park a block away, at a business (hoping I wouldn’t be towed!) and walk by the residence, every 45 minutes or so. First one direction, then the other. Changing sides of the street. And taking breaks in my car between walks. Not exactly as exciting as Bullitt or The French Connection. To an outside observer, it would have looked odd or silly. I felt odd and silly.
No one came out of their house and confronted me. No one called the cops. The subject never left his home for me to follow on foot or by car. Eight boring hours.
Thank the gods I was paid hourly!
Woulda been more fun if I’d walked as in The Ministry of Silly Walks.
h/t You Tube