Two years ago, on Thanksgiving Friday, something happened to me that "only happens to other people". At the time, my house was on the market, the realtor's sign in the front yard. My husband had left early that morning for a short, out of town trip. I spent the morning cleaning up from the festivities the prior day. Around noon, I left to go pick up my Buggy girl and we went out to lunch. Yes, to McD's for a happy meal of course!
We were enjoying our nuggets and happily chattering when my realtor called. He had just received a phone call from the county police and they were trying to get hold of me. Someone had broken into my house! I was only away for maybe an hour! What?? It was the middle of the day on a day when almost no one is at work! My brain was spinning. We packed up and headed for home. I sent Buggy with the neighbors to play while I met with the police.
Moments after I left 2 guys put a brick through my basement door window and helped themselves. They went up into my bedroom (my BEDROOM! Yuck!) and took our change jug. You know, the giant water jug that we all dump our spare change in. Let me tell you, I hadn't cashed that change in years, it was HEAVY!
They quickly discovered how heavy it was, they only carried it as far as my neighbors' driveway. They called their driver for a pickup. Well, my neighbor had heard the noise of the breaking window and called the police while she watched the thieves from her window. The police arrived as the scumbags were loading the money jug into the getaway car. BUSTED!
Repercussion for the thieves you ask? The driver got a slap on the hand. Thief #1 got 6 months and ordered to pay restitution. Thief #2, who was also carrying a concealed weapon, got house arrest (he had health issues!) which he blew off after a month, and he was also ordered to pay restitution. It took police several weeks to find him and put him behind bars for the second time. Prior to trial he agreed to plead guilty and serve 18 months. When this goes in front of a judge, the judge suspended 6 months of the 18 (why?) and gave him credit for some time served (yeah, at home shooting heroin).
I no longer save spare change in my house. I always keep my doors locked when I'm home, even during the day. There are certainly worse things to go through but having your home violated leaves you feeling too vulnerable. Have I seen a penny of the restitution from either of these lowlifes? I think I'll make a call on that today. Maybe ruin their holiday this year.