Carry a large can of pepper spray!!!!!
Meanwhile, agitate for increased police presence, which tends to move gang activity elsewhere.
A simple wave of the arm, and you've disabled 5 people.
And it can disable the person using it if their attackers are upwind... or simply close-enough that the pepper cloud covers the attacker as well as the victim... Oh, and bear spray produces a much larger cloud than normal defensive spray, so it will get the victim as well in most human assault situations (<15 ft between attacker and victim when first deployed)... So you had better hope you recover before your attacker...
What the community has done... http://www.wusa9.com/news/article/26...Of-Teens-In-DC
Please apply some common sense. Because someone is kind enough to explain to you that your fantasies are not realistic - because the weapon you advocate will douse you with pepper gas - does NOT mean that they want to beaten up! Just that they don't like pepper gas.
As usual, when two-legged predators set up 'shop', they do so in areas that suit their purposes -- no place for the 'victim' to go....
Yeahhh, pepper spray would be problematic, given the vagaries of the wind; one time you'd be golden, the other you'd be your own victim. A stun gun would require you to let the predator get within arm's reach.
Paintball pistol? Enough of a nuisance/distraction to allow a good rider to kick up a sprint....?
For the two legged kind, just having a mace gun on my CamelBak strap stopped any further aggression.
Also, my comment to the other poster was appropriate as he did not offer any other solution.
As a kid growing up in Pacific Heights/San Francisco, Ca - I would routinely seem marauding groups of angry kids from the Western Addition seek out kids like me to beat up. They were usually in groups greater than 6. All angrier than hell and beating up random kid victims who they would outflank and outrun. They would sometimes carry BB guns and wing you too. It wasn't an infrequent happening until the Western Addition started to become gentrified.
I got a royal beat down once. And I remember my "friend" Tommy W. running away as fast as he could as he deserted me to save his skin. Meanwhile, I get the crap pummeled out of me. The first kid to punch me was a little sucker who must have seen this as some kind of initiation into manhood. It was weird, because in my head I knew not to strike someone smaller than myself. That said - I did manage to cold cock one of the other bastards, but overcoming 5 others was too much. They kicked, punched, spit, cursed, tore clothes, scratched my face up. I don't remember how I got away, but I think the fact that I wasn't taking it lying down helped. Plus, the afore mentioned cold cocking.
The parents called the cops - but they did little other than taking down some meaningless information and saying stay away from groups of angry kids.
This bike guy's situation is no different than mine. The teens are angrier than all hell. I see this all the time. They live with verbal / physical violence daily, they spend their time talking smack and about getting even. Seriously, spend some time near a group of these kids and the dominant conversation is smack. With other kids (like Pacific Hts, or areas where there is cultivation in the household teen conversations are about academics, sports, college and other things.
In the eyes of these marauding teens - there is very little for them at the end of the road. It's a bleak future, and what better way than to take it out on someone? Especially someone who is not in their neighborhood, or socio-economic status. In my day - there was no video. Perhaps, the community and cyclist get lucky and they catch these cowards who should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
P.S., A female friend of mine was once assaulted by a would-be ****** in Arlington, TX. She used pepper spray and reported that both her and the attacker received roughly equal amounts. It stopped neither of them... He kept attacking and she kept fighting, it wasn't until the arrival of a third party that the attacker fled.
Non-lethal options don't overcome adrenaline (or other drugs) very well. And lethal options are not a sure thing either, particularly in the OP situation. So avoidance is the best, most practical option. In short don't ride alone in dangerous areas if you can avoid it.
Folks that are really worried about being disabled by pepper spray, should do the cop training of getting spray and still fight. Thankfully, bad guys do not do that training.
Pepper spray works well on dogs for a couple of reasons. One they are animals without the ability to override their natural reactions that drugs and sentience give people. Second, one usually sprays dogs at a much greater distance than is possible with people such as in the OP...
And no your response wasn't appropriate, it was simply typical of arm chair internet warriors... Oh, in many states, CA and NY? among others, the use of pepper spray on people has the same legal ramifications as the lethal use of a firearm does in my state. In short, spraying a group of teens with bear spray at a distance that would give you a chance of not spraying yourself is almost certainly going to result in a court room appearance on felony charges... and if you wait to they get close-enough it means you spray yourself as well and make it that much more difficult to run away--which is the only remaining LEGAL option in DC...
In situations such as the OP, there simply isn't any good solution. The best we can learn from such things, is to avoid placing ourselves in risky situations.
Oh, one side note. she still carries pepper spray (I can't convince her to get a CHL), but she has no illusions that it is anything but a last ditch GTH effort, unlike the internet warrior from hawaii...