November 18, 2010

A Little Peace of Mind

During the time I was away from blogging we had a little bit of "excitement" around here.  One morning, not long after I'd left for work, my daughter woke up because the poodle was barking.  She thought he was carrying on because I'd shut him in the kitchen so she got up to let him out.  When she came into the livingroom she became aware that someone was walking around on the front porch.  He must have seen her, because when she ran back into her room to call her dad, he went around to the backdoor and starting really beating on it and yelling. 

Tim, of course, told her to call 911, which she did.  They told her (you will not believe this) to open the door and see what he wanted.  They said maybe he just needs help.  She was terrified and ended up jumping out her bedroom window and running to a neighbor's home.  That was about 6:30 am.  They came back in a car to see if he was still around and found him passed out on the road.  They called 911 again and reported it.  The 911 dispatcher told my daughter to get out of the car and check on him.  Hello????  Does anyone with a brain work for 911?  The neighbor got on the phone and gave them a piece of her mind, not that it did any good.  In the meantime, the guy got up and started wandering around so they tailed him so he wouldn't get away.

While this is going on, my husband is racing home from the job site he is on....over an hour away.  He called his brother and asked him to go since he could get there sooner.  I wasn't able to take a call until 7:20 and when I heard the news I asked my boss to cover my second run, took the bus back to the garage, and drove home by 7:50.  My brother-in-law arrived first and he and another neighbor cornered the guy in an outside cellar stairway.  Tim arrived about 7:40-7:45.  He and his brother both got there before a police officer.  I arrived just two or three minutes after the officer did.  It well over an hour from Megan's original call for someone to show up.  We were livid!

If you ask me, 911 is about useless if they aren't going to properly train their dispatchers.  First of all, there was the really bad advice they gave Megan.  Then we found out from the officer that all they did was dispatch an ambulance to check on "a guy passed out in the road."  They passed it on to the police as something you might want to check on.  Absolutely no urgency was attached to it whatsoever.  Because of that, the state police didn't assign an officer to check on it until their shift change at 7:00 and since there was no urgency, the officer didn't hurry to get here and in fact, did some other things first.

In the long run, no major harm was caused other than Megan being scared to death.  The guy got caught.  Megan has been a nervous nellie ever since and does not like being home alone in the dark, but I found out some information today that I hope will give her some peace of mind.  Turns out the kid is the boyfriend of one of the daughters of the woman who owns the salon I go to.  She told me when I got my hair cut this morning.  Apparently another of her daughters heard Megan telling the story and put it together.

The woman swears the kid is a good kid, just stupid.  He admits to having been out drinking with friends, but says he can't remember much of anything else.  He thinks the drinks must have been spiked with something and says he thinks he was trying to find their house when he was knocking on our door.  She said he's horrified at the way he acted and wanted to come appologize to us.  They convinced him it might not be the best idea.  Now that I know (sort of) who it was, I'd be open to the idea if he really thinks he needs to.  In fact, if he really did appologize I'd be pretty impressed.   It's a tough thing to own up to.


Rochelle@AFamilyofLooneys said...

Wow. What really crappy advice 911 gave her. There is no way I would have opened the door. Not with her being by herself. You just never know what could happen. I am glad she is ok.

Wendy said...

Oh, I'm so glad no one was hurt. Sometimes the way the law works makes me really wonder who's side are they on? If a woman is stalked, she has to wait until her perpetrator actually commits an act of violence and sure, open the door to the big bad wolf so he can come in with a hurt paw??? huh?

Catch Her in the Wry said...

Allow the kid to apologize. If he really is a good kid, you need to allow him to confess his guilt. Facing their victims helps "criminals" personalize and understand the effects of their behavior on the victims, and that often keeps them from doing the same stupid thing again.

Sounds like the more serious problem is with the 911 people.


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