Scene of a mass shooting in Bloomington early Sunday morning, October 16th.
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When trouble shows up, will you be ready?

For people oblivious of their surroundings – in Condition White as Col. Cooper would say (or “unaware” in the NRA’s scale of awareness) – trouble is invisible.

Seldom is it as obvious as it might be with these gents:


People who don’t pay attention can quickly find themselves “blindsided” by trouble they didn’t see coming.

We’ve all heard it before…  “He came out of nowhere!”

No, the bad guy didn’t come out of nowhere.  *You* weren’t paying attention to your surroundings.

Be aware of your surroundings.

Have a plan.

At home, have a saferoom, equipped with your communications, a flashlight, personal defense tool(s) and anything else you need to wait out trouble until the police can arrive to help.

Sometimes trouble doesn’t announce its arrival.  Many times it does though, particular if you’re aware of your surroundings and can pick up on subtle clues.

Another way to avoid trouble (and reduce the likelihood of burglaries) is to not bring people into your home that you don’t know well.

Parties for people you don’t know well?

Forget about it.

Why not?

Well, some people don’t like it when you ask them to leave.

From left to right: Ross Johnson, 20; Malcolm Johnson, 19; Dartaveon Miles, 18. The three men are currently housed in the McLean County Jail, accused of home invasion and attempted murder after a shooting incident early Sunday morning that left four people injured.
Photos by McLean County Sheriff’s Department. Text by

They take it personally, as if entitled to crash the host’s party.

Sometimes, like last weekend in Bloomington, the aggrieved parties may pull out their illegally possessed gun and begin firing indiscriminately.

Thankfully, none of the neighbors were wounded and nobody was killed.  However, several people were shot.

Bloomington, IL ( –  A Normal man accused of shooting four people after being kicked out of a party over the weekend in Bloomington saw new charges added and his bond doubled during a hearing Tuesday.

Ross Johnson, 20, of Normal appeared Tuesday before Judge Mike Stroh, who doubled Johnson’s bond from $500,000 to $1 million. Assistant State’s Attorney Bill Workman added four charges of aggravated battery with a firearm to the previous four charges of attempted murder and one count of home invasion.

The attempted murder charges relate to injuries suffered by Jonathon Lipscomb, 18, of Normal, who suffered a grazing gunshot wound to the shoulder following an altercation at a party about 1:30 a.m. Sunday at 1101 Gettysburg Drive. He was not hospitalized for the wounds, but three Bloomington residents, Shanieca Mack, 18, Preston Bellamy, 18, and Kwaan Mason, 21, also were wounded by gunfire and remain hospitalized.

Mack, who was shot in the chest, abdomen and leg, was in stable condition at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria. Bellamy was shot in the face and neck and was listed in stable but critical condition at OSF Saint Francis.

Mason was shot in the posterior and was in stable condition at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center, Normal.



Here’s a story from Champaign about a woman who was victimized in a carjacking on the U of Illinois campus in August.  She was in condition white and didn’t see trouble coming.

…However, [Judge] Clem allowed the 57-year-old carjacking victim to tell him what she’d been going through since being grabbed from behind and put in a painful chokehold.

“I never saw my attacker coming up behind me. He was too much of a coward to face me. He was too much of a coward to take on a man or even someone his own age,” Nancy Dodge said.

“I could only think of two things during the assault. My first thought was, ‘Am I going to be beaten, raped or killed?’ The second was about my five-year old granddaughter. I had to keep fighting back to prevent anything from happening to me. I wanted to be the same ‘Ma’ that she had always known.”

But Dodge’s statement made it clear that the attack had changed her. She enumerated for Clem the physical and mental pains she has suffered.

“My neck was painful to the touch. … My voice was raspy and I had terrible pain with every swallow and every turn of my head. I missed two days of work … and continued having pain for about two weeks,” she read.

Dodge said she had bills for the emergency room visit, ongoing counseling, repairs to her stolen car, and the cost of getting it out of storage, just to name a few. She was without her car for 10 days