Shooting next door

I got to my house at 5.30 this morning to drop of washing for the cleaner to do a check out clean and the whole place was roped off with police tape and reporters were everywhere. Turns out the neighbours son had been shot in the middle of the night (not dead). Seems like he might be a bit dodgy, not just a random shooting.
So I am asking for some suggestions on how to deal with this. I need to call and check on them once it gets to a reasonable hour. Do I offer a refund for their stay straight up? If they review do I comment on it when they mention a shooting next door? I don’t know what to do. I need to be ready.

Not fully following. You showed up at your rental at 5:30 this morning to drop off linens? This is the same rental the guests are in?

Is this a whole house they are renting?

Yes, whole house. I have a cleaner for the days I work. I drop supplies in the garage early on my way to work. Lucky I did or I might not have known what was going on

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So the guests did not inform you at all of a shooting? Your place was roped off? If the guests are able to come and go, I wouldn’t be so quick to offer a refund.

Hopefully they are understanding and wouldn’t mention something like that in a review.

They can come and go as they want, but did get a door knock at some stage on the night by police and one of the bedroom windows is right beside where it happened.
So maybe just call and say I heard there was an incident and see what they say?

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I would def. not call and accidentally wake them up. Esp. if they had trouble getting back to sleep. I would say play it by ear.

My guests once texted me the next morning to let me know that cops showed at their door in the middle of the night. Supposedly someone in the area called 911 and hung up. They pinged it to a cell phone coming from the back yard.

I did tell them I would follow up with the police because I was initially concerned that maybe they were not real cops. And possibly just random people scoping out the property and were surprised renters were there. Turned out the call was legit and I thanked them for letting me know. They were appreciative that I followed up.

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Soo, two thoughts.

1… Offer a full refund if they agree to not leave a review.

  1. If they don’t bite, work it like a recent Chicago host did when this happened locally. Change your listing title to something like, "You’ll get a bang out of my airbnb). Then leave this playing on a loop for all new checkins… ;}

Murder in the City

Sorry, I usually go with humor when the situation sux…


Thanks Cabinhost. i feel a bit calmer. I was freaking out. I’m still freaking out a little. This will definitely be a disaster for bookings if they do mention it in the review.
No early wake up call. But I should call at some stage right?

That is against the terms of service.


Yes, I already decided not to go with the blackmail angle


I wouldn’t offer a refund at all, with respect this is America no? Compared to most of the rest of the world your gun deaths, accidents and incidents are out of control so as a tourists I would expect someone to get shot as some point on my trip- hopefully not me. Someone got stabbed in the hallway of the very upmarket apartment next to my building a few years ago and SWAT team and cops everywhere for hours- sh@t happens and I’m not in a violent city/country.

I would simply messsge in Airbnb, don’t call, to say you dropped off the linens for the cleaner this am, spoke to police who advised there was an incident last night that was quickly resolved and apologize if they were interrupted. Say something like I hope you are otherwise having a wonderful stay and please let me know if I can do anything.

Open the door but don’t offer a refund, if anything I would refund 50% if last night for the interruption, if asked.


Actually, @Highgatehill is in Australia. Hopefully, her guests are American as you are correct that, tragically, for us gun violence is an everyday fact of life.

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I am in Australia, I’ve never even seen a gun except on a police mans belt. This is a crazy situation. But I’ve got some ideas of what to do now. I will wait till 8am then send a short text. They didn’t respond to my message about check out through the air system yesterday.

If these guests are the type who mention it, you may want to keep any details to yourself. Such as the neighbor being dodgy. Don’t let them know that. Although, they may end up talking to other neighbors anyway and hearing stuff. But try to limit any info you share. That way if they do mention anything you can always respond with a general reply that unfortunately during their stay, the neighbor’s son had a tragedy happen. As long as you reassure any future guests that the neighborhood is safe, I think you will be fine. Like Emily said, shit happens.

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I’m so glad I wrote here first instead of rushing in and waving handfuls of money around demanding that they take it


Don’t speak too quickly though…lol. They may demand a refund for that night. But if they do, I would have them go through Air and let them compensate them. Because if they are going to expect you to refund them, then they are the type who would still leave it in a review.

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Wow Emily, really!!! I’ve lived in America all my life and not ONCE have I been a part of a gun violent situation! None of my friends or family have…actually the vast majority of the city, county and state I live in has not had gun violence incidents.

Compared to the rest of the world, we are a very big country. 50 different states. Mainland 3000 miles wide. Stuff happens. Stuff gets reported far and wide. The reason it is news is because it is not an everyday occurrence.

Default, knee-jerk assumptions that people

  • especially tourists - are likely to get shot is absurd.

Not everywhere! Let’s not feed the perception that all of America is like the old cowboy westerns and we like to “shoot 'em up!”


Yes, everywhere in the U.S. as with a few exceptions every adult American (and many who aren’t adults) have access to guns.

Here are some statistics about gun violence in the U.S.

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I had not seen that site. Even if it is true…62% were self-inflicted. I don’t think the message we should be sending to tourists (or anyone else) should be one of walking in fear.

Remember what Mark Twain said about statistics…I think a closer look at how they are reporting data is needed rather than just reading the sound bites.