Famous Last Words : We Was Robbed!October 2013 By Denny Hatch
When I was seriously freelancing, people would ask me what I did for a living. I said, "I write junk mail."
Frequently they would wrinkle their noses and look down them with contempt. "We hate junk mail." It was with great pleasure I would say, "What's more, at one point in my life I was the world's foremost authority on junk mail." And I would think, "So shove that up your wrinkled nose."
I am a distance communicator, committed to the savings of time (and money) by dealing with people on the phone, by mail and, above all, online.
But my tidy life blew up when our house was broken into during the wee hours of a Sunday morning in August. Thank God Peggy and our niece were out of town visiting a cousin. But I was alone in the house asleep.
The thief tried at first to use a crowbar a front window—no doubt desperate for cash. Six deep scars were on the sill.
Had the window been breached, the perp would have climbed through into the house and dropped 15 feet onto the tile floor of the sunken living room.
Instead, I awoke to find the brass plate ripped off the front of the mail slot in the middle of the front door. The creep had reached in and turned the deadbolt mechanism and let himself in. The sophisticated alarm system was not turned on.
The police and detectives who came were terrific. They dusted for fingerprints and said this was very likely the crime of an undernourished crack addict. These people have skinny arms and can reach through mail slots and unlock doors. Cops are real good at customer service. Unlike others.
The thief prowled the house, I guess saw me sleeping on the third floor and fled. I could have been killed.
My wallet and credit cards were taken, along with my driver's license, Medicare and insurance cards, a bunch of cash and a spare house key. My ancient cell phone was taken, as well.
Within eight hours, the lock was changed and we had a second lock high up on the front door. We also had the alarm system checked and it is up and working. We even invested in a surveillance system. If we had it at the time, we would have had a clear picture of the robber(s). Here is the hierarchy of customer service I experienced throughout this ordeal: