We’ve all heard stories of bad things happening when a car flashes its high beams at another car. The story has been told so many times, that it could be considered an urban legend and people don’t really believe it anymore. This urban legend became too real for a woman from South Carolina.
Because she’s worried for her safety, the woman we’re talking about wishes for her identity to be kept anonymous. The story takes place shortly before Christmas, when the woman was sitting in her car in a Walmart parking lot in Newport. People were hurrying to get last minute Christmas shopping done, so it was pretty busy. Out of nowhere, something unexpected happened.
A car pulled into a spot in front of the woman, but other people were pulling in and out, so she didn’t think anything of it. Normally, the woman would’ve thought it was typical behavior, except for what they did next. They turned on their high beams, blinding her.
The woman wasn’t able to see anything and she was very confused. She had no idea what to do. She became very nervous as soon as the occupants of the car get out of the vehicle. Her anxiety began to rise when she noticed it was two men , wearing hoodies pulled down past their eyes. As soon as they started walking towards her she was consumed by fear.
In no time, the men were standing next to her car, one on her side and one on the passenger side. She immediately backed out of the parking spot, but they were reaching for her car doors, so she quickly locked them. She drove away as fast as she could, but the occurrence left her a bit freaked out.
The woman was left with so much confusion. She didn’t even know what had happened, so she chose not to contact the police. But she was still really uncomfortable about it, so she left the state to go stay with family for a little while. She told a coworker what had happened to her, and they decided to warn the community.
The coworker decided to write a Facebook post about what had happened to the woman in the Walmart parking lot. Because she knew more people were out and about since it was the holiday season, she wanted everyone to know about it so they could stay safe. It didn’t take long before the post went viral and law enforcement got wind of it.
When the Rock Hill Police Department heard the story they became extremely concerned. Even though they had heard the flashing high beam story a number of times, they didn’t want to take any chances. The checked the 911 call log, but there were no reports, so they decided to reach out to Facebook. Some people didn’t take them seriously, though.
There were a lot of people that didn’t think that the post the police department put up was real. They said that it was fake and made fun of the police for falling for it. But there were others that did believe it, so they shared the post in order to help. The coworker saw the police department’s post and reached out the them.
Once they spoke to the coworker, the police realized that they could have a real threat on their hands. They immediately opened up an investigation. They conducted a search to find the surveillance video of the day it happened. As soon as they saw it they knew that they were in trouble.
The surveillance video provided proof that the woman was telling the truth. She could be seen driving away as two men in hoodies approached her car. But there was a problem. The video wasn’t clear enough to identify the suspects, or their car. While they were continuing their investigation to nail these guys, they would have to warn the community.
The public information officer for RHPD, Mark Bollinger, talked to NBC Charlotte about the occurrence and the investigation. He said there was a good chance that the men were trying to convince the woman to leave the safety her car. “It could’ve been someone trying to entice her to get out of the car,” he said. He also shared some tips on what to do in case viewers had the same thing happen to them.
“Stay in your car and call us or leave that spot,” Bollinger suggested. “If the car starts to follow you, go to either a well-lit convenience store or the nearest police agency.” Bollinger said preventing it from happening is key and the best way to make that happen is by remaining vigilant.
Bollinger also told NBC Charlotte that since this happened, and the fact that it was the holiday season, people are encouraged to not sit in their cars alone, and to pay attention. The Walmart incident also shows how vitally important it is to keep your doors looked. Bollinger also wanted to make sure that listeners know that they can always count on the police, as well.
“If you ever feel like you’re in an unsafe situation, don’t think you’re bothering us. That’s what we’re here for, we’re here to help,” Bollinger told NBC Charlotte. The Rock Hill Police Department is seemingly taking the right steps when it comes to dealing with high beam incidents, but that’s not true for all police departments.
One man in Alberta was driving down the road one night when he saw an oncoming car with their high beams on. In an effort to tell the car to turn their high beams off, he flashed his own. But the other car was a sheriff’s car. It immediately turned around and pulled the man over. The man received a ticket for failing to use his low-beams when an on-coming car is within 300 meters.