Wednesday, September 05, 2007


It is the call you do not want to receive: "Hello, this is officer Gretzky, I am in your house. Your house has been burglarized. Please come to your house." It was 2pm in the afternoon.

On my way home, I went over the set of items of value in our house. Luckily the list is rather small. And after today I plan to keep it that way. (It has been on my to-do list for a while to make an inventory sheet with serial numbers.)

I wondered why the police was already in my house. How did they know there was a burglary? How did they even get my cellphone number? The first answer popped immediately into my head: Jim! No burglary alarm can replace vigilant neighbors. I am lucky, very lucky, to have a retired neighbor across the street who loves to smoke a cigarette outside in front, while he talks with his cats. The answer to the second question became clear later on: the list of contact numbers we keep on the fridge for the baby sit.

It is weird to see close to ten police cars in front of your house. And they never park neatly. Apparently, there had been close to 15 cars in the street when the burglary happened. Four officers were combing through my house, taking pictures and fingerprints. A couple others were taking statements from people in the street.

Luckily they caught the @#$%#$@$ards. Two of them. A third was in a car on the look out and evaded capture. It was all thanks to a quick call from Jim. He noticed two people who did not belong in our neighborhood, and especially not walking up to our house. A big black gang banger with a T-shirt to his knees, and another fella, which Jim couldn't describe very well. They were hanging around the place for a while, rang the bell and then went to the side of the house. A look-out car stopped in front. The cops apparently were here very quickly. First an officer on his bicycle. Then many many police cars and officer with guns drawn running behind the thieves.

Our stuff is almost all recovered as the big bags were left when the cops were hot on their tales. There are a couple of items missing and we are still checking which other items might be missing. The fence was broken down as the apparently fat burglar wasn't able to jump it, and thus ran straight through it. He broke a few more fences down his path.

The list of items which were removed from the house show these guys were out to make a quick buck. Beyond the obvious items (necklaces, digital camera, etc.), they even took
  • My son's piggy bank (why carry all those pennies and quarters?)
  • Toy walky-talkies (range: 5 meters)
  • DVDs: a spindle of empty DVD-R and a collection of Pixar DVDs.
  • 24/7 timer (which they needed to disconnect from the lamp)
  • two big traveling bags (to carry the loot)
We were very lucky. Great response from the police force. And especially thanks to Jim!

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