“Street violence is almost unheard of in Paris, in spite of its revolutionary history. Van loads of police, smartly dressed in Navy helmets, sweaters, and pads, are parked about at the ready. Small squads of military men toting machine guns sometimes patrol tourist zones. Thieves are common enough, however, and you should keep an eye on your stuff. Street hucksters are also around, often teenaged “gypsy” girls, who will approach with a well practised tale of woe, intent on ridding you of spare money. If someone approaches and asks if you speak English, the best answer is usually, “no.” Paris does have a few punks, who vandalize with spray cans (as opposed to real grafitti artists) and entertain themselves by verbally abusing tourists—and everyone else. These guys are infrequently at train stations and in the outer neighborhoods. Not a big problem.”
Excerpt From: Jerry and Janine Sprout. “No Worries Paris.” iBooks.