Thursday, May 16, 2013

Good Samaritan

While we live in Chicago, city proper, don't live downtown.  Our neighborhood is not this:
It's more like this:

We live about three-quarters mile from Wrigleyfield.  Our streets are tree-lined.  Children and dogs parade the sidewalks after work and on weekends. It is a community and it is our home.
In our neighborhood, parking is free (no permit required), which means that driving on the weekends makes for a hell of a time to find a parking spot upon return.  Lucky for us, nearby there is a strip of parking that's free from 6pm to 9am.  The problem is that you have to move your car by 9am.
Recently, we were in such a situation.  However, having three dogs in the house used to getting up by 6am, waking up to move the car before getting a ticket (9am), is not an issue.  I was walking Oscar down our street around 7:30am to move the car when I noticed something strange.  A guy in a hoodie in the driver's seat of a car with the entire dashboard off. Eek!
As soon as I saw I looked away.  I was within 10 feet of the car and nervous that this person could possibly harm me for seeing what I saw.  I hurried to our car and drove past the guy/car again.  The guy seemed to be working feverishly connecting wires.
After I found a parking spot (luckily in front of our apartment) I really started thinking about how odd a scene it was, especially before 8am on a Sunday.  About two summers ago I stupidly left our car unlocked in the same neighborhood and came back to the car to find it'd been raided (Ben will never forgive me for having his Oakley sunglasses and miscellaneous CDs stole, I swear). 
I decided to call 311 and report a "possible hijacking".  I was immediately switched to 911 in our police district, who told me they'd send a squad car out.  After about 10 minutes I meet a police woman in the street.  As I started to explain was what going on, with the car still in view, the car's door opened!
The cop backed up her squad car to the perpetrator and I went inside (I didn't want this person knowing where we live and come back to get me).  After what seemed like forever, the cop car came back and I saw the guy walk away from the car (yet he wasn't in the cop car).  The cop explained to me that the guy owned the car and was trying to install a new cd player in it.  She kind of laughed as she said the color visibly had drained from his face when she pulled up and he had started shaking when she started to address him.
I apologize for my mistake. I felt terrible!  She said there was no need to apologize and that I had done the right thing by calling it because it did look suspicious.  "Better safe than sorry" - and those were her words, not mine.


  1. Calling 911 is scary in and of itself that you're in the position to need help! Kudos for doing the right thing and she's right, better safe than sorry!

  2. I'm glad it turned out to be ok! But yes, good for you to make the call!

  3. Haha that's insane but good for you!


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