Monday, September 13, 2010

now it's just getting weird: crime spree

I have lived here for five years, plus a month. In those five years, there has not been any crime here that I've known about, other than a few homeless folks camping in their tents in the woods, and I have no problem with them. Sunday morning, early, I was taking boris to the dog park around the corner. There is construction going on next door to my house, where the violent crime of a few weeks ago happened. As we walked by, we got out of the way of someone trying to move the giant truck full of concrete building pavers. I said to the dog, oh, he does not look like he knows what he's doing, we should probably just cross the street. As we walked, I watched the guy drive over the curb and bump out into the road. He stopped in the middle of the intersection, grinding the gears, stalling the truck, then getting it restarted. He did this every few feet. I noticed that one of the big straps used to hold the load secure was dragging under the massive tires, and whenever he would try to move forward, the truck would skid, stuck on said straps. So one of the stalled-in-the-road times, I went over to the side of the truck and waved at him. He just stared at me. So I went around to the driver's side, and he still just stared at me. I yelled, Roll down your window! He did, and I told him what the problem was, and maybe he should fix it, though (I said), maybe it doesn't matter. I have no idea.

Walking away, I was kind of laughing, thinking - I wonder if he's stealing that truck? Maybe he hotwired it, and that's why it keeps stalling. Nah. That would be silly. Then I was just messing around with myself, saying, well, if he IS stealing it, I probably should have really studied his face, in case I have to describe him to the cops. If he's stealing it, he must have wondered what the heck I wanted when I flagged him over. Citizen's arrest? Walking back, I saw the man had dropped a parcel of concrete pavers on the side of the road and just left it there. I figured, oh, maybe someone sent him over there to pick the truck up, as a favor, and he is just doing the best he can. He probably didn't even notice losing that side of the truck. I certainly know what it is like to be having a supremely bad day where nothing is going right. Felt kind of bad for the guy. Rough day.

This morning, I opened up the paper. And saw: man steals large construction vehicle loaded with concrete pavers. Officers have charged the man with operating under the influence, driving to endanger, and allegedly stealing the vehicle from a nearby construction site. No one was injured, and the man is being held at the county jail.

And what did I do, immediately? Picked up my phone to call matt, and tell him - hey! You know that guy I saw yesterday? He really WAS stealing that truck. And here I was, all Polly Helpful, pointing out ways he could make his get-away go far more smoothly.

So glad no one was hurt. I already feel kind of awful that I didn't call someone about suspicious driving behavior, but I did talk myself down on that one yesterday, thinking - what do I know, and I'm just being silly. Maybe big trucks are just really hard to drive. But if someone had been hurt, I don't think that would have gone down too well for me, that I saw it starting and didn't stop it. Thankfully, I do not need to go down that particular road. However, I will say, that if I see anybody driving and behaving oddly again, I will call the police. It was just sheer luck it was early enough on a Sunday that that guy didn't hurt anyone.

All of which to say - two crimes in less than a month, right next door to me seems just a wee bit silly. And,  once again be so bummed that Matt is not here to shake his head at me and my "helpfulness."

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