Sunday, July 02, 2006

Helicopter, Bullhorn, Two Suspects, cont.

And here's what happened.

Matt (Jane's husband), his Mom and Lottie headed out to pre-school. It's 8:45 AM or so and Jane is at home with Baby Sophie. The doorbell is rung, repeatedly, urgently and as Jane peered through the peephole, she saw two teenage boys sending nervous, darting looks over their shoulders. She didn't answer the door but moved quietly away, making sure the pacifier was firmly in Sophie's mouth. Thinking they'd probably just leave, she took a half glance out a window obscured by bougainvilla and climbing roses and saw them heading for the side of her house. As she ran to the back, checking to see if that door was locked, she punched 911 into her phone. Emergency personnel said they'd keep her on the line until the police arrived so Jane nipped back to the front side of the house and furtively peered through a chink in the curtains, and watched the teens expertly slipping the screen off the window and reported that back to the operator. My daughter and her family live in the main house and there's a small flat towards the back and side, fully connected to her house, but with a separate entrance. We're all quite convinced that after breaking into what these kids logically assumed was a single-family home, their pissed-offedness and confusion was most likely profound when they discovered a little one-bedroomed flat. There was little time for them to reflect on their next move, though, as concurrent with the arrival of multiple police cars, a helicopter whickered its approach. Cops quickly surrounded Jane's house and as the two jumped-up (crystal meths?) kids threw open a back window to make their getaway, they saw cops headed toward them. Back into the flat they climbed and then the stand-off began.

Jane threw on some clothes and she and Baby Sophie were escorted outside. That's when she saw police cars blocking either end of their street and that's when she called her husband and told him he may not want to come home quite yet. He and his Mom were there minutes later.

Police entered the flat, with a cop dog, and Jane expected them to come out with the teens. They didn't, but they did assure my daughter that they were now aware that the intruders were in the attic crawl space, and asked Jane if the crawl spaces are connected..the answer is yes. Huh? YES! SHIT...There's a couple of jumped up teenagers in the crawlspace above my daughter's house. Suddenly there's a lot of activity and the police march the first young suspect out the front door. He'd chosen to exit the attic through my daughter's walk-in closet. Through my daughter's walk-in closet. Trouble is, only one suspect chose to exit the attic. The second is still up there and the cops more or less tell the kids and Matt's Mom that they can go back in to their home, to just act normally and that they (the police) would be stationed in their backyard, in the middle bedroom next to the walk-in closet and down the street.

Jane headed off to collect Charlotte at pre-school and then over to a friend's house to kill some time, hoping that the 'incident' would be resolved before they returned home. It wasn't and as they walked through the front door, Matt explained the police in the bedroom and the backyard to his four and a half year old in simple terms, which she seemed to think was quite normal. Lottie ran back, said "Hi" to the police lady and just seemed to accept that this woman was going to be sitting in a garden chair, in the house, facing the walk-in closet. This child acts questions about everything, but just accepted this stranger's presence. The police had explained to Matt that they could just carry on as normal. Their assumption was that the kid in the crawlspace, who it turned out was hiding between the insulation and the roof, would hear the racket in Jane's house, assume the cops were gone, and exit the crawlspace in the other unit, although they left a cop in my daughter's place on the offchance he did the opposite. But that's eventually what he did, six hours after he'd climbed into the attic. Jane said it was quiet, and then suddenly the officer in their place got a radio call and she took off out the front door, the officer in the back yard ran around the side and another officer in the street ran toward the house, tackling the kid to the ground. And then as suddenly as it had begun, it was over. Sixteen-year old Joaquin, a kid with a long rap sheet and a druggie mom, a runaway from Bakersfield, was in the back of a squad car. And he just accepted his fate. No expression. Nothing. It was over.

And it's a helluva story for Matt's Mom to take back to Madison, Wisconsin.


Blogger gwendomama said...


Wow Lin - NEVER a dull moment, eh? WHERE the heck do they live?
We happen to live near a rural badboys camp (youth services) and it is always on my mind...
SOOO glad eveyrone is okay.

9:52 AM  
Blogger Ova Girl said...

Yes please let me add to that in my best Australian accent:


Good lord Lin! Also glad that everyone is ok. How wierd to think of that kid hiding up in that crawl space for six hours....

3:29 AM  
Blogger Paula T said...

I was blog surfing and found your blog tonight. Read this entry. Wow!!! That's quite a story! Can't say how I would handle the same thing.

9:53 PM  
Blogger junebee said...

Thank goodness everyone's ok.

I want to know why the cops didn't get their fat butts up into the crawl space. It would seem to be alot more economical to go after the kid than to pay someone to sit there for 6 hours till he got hungry enough to come down.

Excellent clear-headed thinking on Jane's part also.

12:10 PM  
Anonymous Jenijen said...

Wow. I'm stumped on what to say, other than how good it is that no one was hurt.

12:25 AM  

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