The TV show Law and Order has been enjoyed by thousands on a weekly basis over the last 10 years. Faithfully watching the show season after season paid off for one woman recently. While riding the train, a note was dropped in her lap that read, “There are 2 guns pointed at you now.” What she did next was pure genius.
The note also said, “If you want to live hand back your wallet + phone NOW + do not turn around and be descreet(sic). Do not turn around until after you have left civic center + you will live.”
Frantic and filled with fear, Julie Dragland, mouthed the words “help me” to passengers around her. Dragland, who is a PR representative for SEGA in Oakland, tried this for a couple of minutes but gave up when she couldn’t get anyone’s attention.
She knew she was on her own, and what she did next would decide if she was going to live or die. When the train began to empty, Dragland had thoughts of running away at the stop or even fighting her would-be robbers.
Eventually, she realized that the situation was eerily similar to a recent Law and Order re-run she’d watched. In order for the victim on the show to escape a mugging, the woman faked a seizure.
“I probably looked very ridiculous,” she told the San Francisco Chronicle. “I slumped sideways and started shaking and crying. I closed my eyes and increased the vigor so people would pay attention.”
Shaking violently, nearby passengers began to notice her, and an elderly couple came to her aid. As they approached, Dragland handed them the note. The 32-year-old thinks that the would-be robber then got off at the next stop.
She told law enforcement who met her at the next stop that she thought it was an elderly lady with a suitcase who was sitting near her. Authorities have canvased the security tapes for any suspicious characters but to no avail.
After calming down from the heart-pounding incident she had just endured, Dragland told the Daily Mail she was proud of herself. “I think (the idea) had something to do with watching a lot of ‘Law & Order.’ I think I saw that in an episode. I was very impressed with myself.”