Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Where Are the Police When You Need Them?

The blog's gone off the tracks people.  I was all set to confess my sins of watching the Bachelorette again tonight when all hell broke loose.

I'll get to the recap later today, but have to take a rabbit trail for a moment to tell you about the mayhem that occurred outside my house last night.  I know what you're thinking, "Oh lawdy not the neighbors again".  Oh no.  Not the ones downstairs and not the metal heads, but this time the fake rapper and his girlfriend.  Here's how it all went down.  Note:  Usually I wouldn't bring this up, but I think attention should be brought to violence.  Especially violence against women.



There I was all prepped with blanket, a bowl of cherries and the DVR when I heard the following:

"EFF (the full word, but for the sake of blog semi-cleanliness I'll just use eff) you Gary! Get the eff out my house b*tch.  I mean it GET OUT." bang clank slam bang clank slam bang clank slam "I MEAN IT GARY OUT NOW!!" What on earth has happened to my neighborhood? "You mf, this, that and the other thing.  Get away from me Gary!! Do not come near me, just GET OUT NOW! I am tired of you calling me names and threatening me.  I'm a professional, I'm too good for this.  I'm up here and you're down there--this has to stop once and for all." 

At this point I get up to look out the window into Pat's yard (those little attached bungalows) to find the chronic smoking neighbors in a full on brawl.  She's throwing his stuff out the door and he's hauling it back in.  Rinse and repeat.  Until he assumes position in the doorway and turns the tables on her.  She can't get back in.  This is the same nasty guy who was trying to rap to the death metal of the other neighbors when I had the whiteout and ripped them all a new one.  I knew he was a hitter.  Don't ask me how I knew, I just did.  Cut to scene and he shoves her out the door locking her out, lifts the blinds and refuses to leave HER HOUSE.  She's scared of him and you can tell.  I watched him shove her and threaten her.  This ended in me calling 911, her leaving and HIM calling 911 to cover his own tracks.

I called the Police three times tonight.  She would leave and come back and this maniac would not let her into her own home.  He would throw things at her out the window and she would leave.  The police would come and he would lie to them blaming her.  It's so telltale it's revolting and you think they would recognize the pattern by now, right??  One time he met the Police in the street and they didn't even get out of their car.  He was going off so loudly I could hear with just a window open in my house...yet they still just drove away and left him alone.  IN HER HOME.  On the 3rd visit they finally went to the door and he proceeded to holler about how she on antidepressants, has anger management issues (pot/kettle), how she got mad because he was playing a song(?), and that he tried to "calm her down", but she just left.  Oh yeah and "I don't live here.  It's not my place.  I don't have a job--well I actually I'm a martial arts teacher (ahem beater) but should have a job this week."  He tells everyone and their mother that he's a martial arts teacher--including the mailman.  I overheard him again the other day higher than a kite in the backyard.  I mean how many of his own statements--which are basic admissions to guilt-- in addition to his yelling, screaming and puffs of marijuana smoke should have had this guy in the back of the car hauled in for questioning and possible charges on domestic violence??  Finally I called the Police again to explain what was really going on from the point of view of a sane neighbor who had been witnessing this all evening and you know what the 911 operator said to me--wait for it:

"It seems to us based on his account that she's the problem.  We only have his account and he's the only one sticking around to give it."  Pause for a moment and absorb this.

What in the hell was this guy talking about?  They had/have my account - a front row witness.  A sober person --and one of several neighbors who called on her behalf.  If she would have slowed down I would have yanked her into my house.

This 911 operator proceeded to tell me that even though the guy doesn't live there because he's been staying there they consider it his home and won't remove him.  Even better? They believe him--because he's the one who has stayed to talk to them.  I just lost it.  What kind of rationale is that?  The guilty sick bastards always stay around.  Scott Peterson much?  This guy next door is a name caller, a pusher, a shover, a drug abusing, out of control individual who is now squatting in the home of the woman he abuses and the 911 operator thinks this same guy is in the right.  Someone pass me an antidepressant.

Here is where our system is broken.  Here is where women end up dead after calling 911 so many times and having zero protection from the law.  When is this ever going to change? How many bodies will it take?  This 911 operator was clearly discriminating against the female and siding with the male.  He called HER out of control.  HER.  I could barely contain myself when I responded, "Sir with all due respect this woman is terrified of this man when he gets angry and she should be.  I have overheard him berate her with the most profane language in the six weeks they have lived here.  I have watched him smoke massive amounts of marijuana in the yard daily.  I have witnessed him harass a 72 year old woman and her husband to such an extent they no longer sit in their own yard. I have heard her ask him not to push her, to get his hands off of her.  And now tonight I watched him forcefully remove her from her home and you're telling me because she is scared to stay and talk to you for fear of what this man will do to her she is in the wrong and he is in the right.  Am I understanding you correctly?"

And this person responded...yes.

As a survivor of domestic violence I am disgusted that nothing has changed in the past 15 years.  Nothing.  I can only hope she has a car to sleep in or else she's on the street tonight while that sick bastard sleeps in her bed.  What is wrong with this picture?  If  you are brave enough to discuss it I want to know if you have ever experienced the same problems getting the Police to help out in a domestic violence situation.  It is appalling the way they repeatedly side with the abuser.  And if you don't want to say anything that's okay too.


We will resume regular Bachelorette trash talk later this afternoon.

47 comments:

Indie.Tea said...

No, I haven't been in THAT situation. But I just know that is seems to be the type of issue - that and sexual abuse, 'date rape' (why don't we call it what it is - RAPE) - that law enforcement doesn't want to deal with.
I really hopes she breaks up with him. And gets a restraining order too.

this free bird said...

Okay I totally know where you're coming from. Why on earth will they not step in on behalf of women who are clearly in dire need of support?? I just don't get it.

And I hope she gets a restraining order too...I want him GONE

annelise said...

I've never had this kind of experience or anything like it(thank God) and this sounds out of control.

Have you thought about putting in a formal complaint about the operator? Feck, what else can you do?

Jaclyn said...

so happy for you being brave to post this - it is horrible how the police reacted.

Debby said...

Carrie, so sorry for whatever trials you had to experience with domestic violence. So very horrible. I feel for her. The system is broken. He will get his in the end. It is good that you called because at least they have it on record. xo

Daisy said...

first of all, you love the bachelorette, admit it (in all its effed up glory.)

second and more important, this story made me really sad and frustrated. I am so sorry you had to deal with this (and domestic abuse of your own for that matter.) that woman needs to stand up for herself! in other words stop pretending like nothings wrong. if she can't help herself then the police apparently cant help her either. its a really f*ed up system!!! I wish they could see what is going on, especially after you told them. maybe you can talk to her and make her see the light!!!

RosaLovesDC said...

This is so scary. And I am so sorry you had to deal with domestic violence yourself at som epoint in your life. I really hope your neighbor stays away from this guy for good. Of course, I hope she can get back into her home.

Danielle (elleinadspir) said...

So frustrating. And completely awful.

Closet Fashionista said...

Wow...that is just garbage...I really don't get it. There really is something wrong when they won't believe the truth, I mean come on...who would believe a guy when he says that?!!! dkfhdsklfjdklasfjslk
I could go on forever but I'll just stop there, ha ha...

Erika ~TiptoeButterfly~ said...

u have NO idea the anger i have for this - had an issue in NY yesterday - guy wanted to fight me b/c it was a 1 lane road and he wanted to make it 2 - he waited for me to go by him but i refused - had to call Joe - of course Joe gets ready to leave work and beat ass - i'm Miss Peacemaker - i think fighting is just SO wrong - AND in NY a man PUSHED me to the ground! - police came 4 hours later and said "i don't see bruises your fine" - i'm like WHAT!!!!!!! - i should of let Joe kick the guy's ass!

PS - if u check my blog u can fix the comment issue - i gotta use the name/url thing to comment - i can't comment with blogger/google or anythuibng ..

Megan said...

very glad you posted this carrie.
and these neighbors are really starting to annoy me...so i can only imagine what you go through living in such close proximity to them.

lastly, bring on this bachelorette smackdown. im ready for it!

Diana Mieczan said...

This is really scary and Im so sorry that you had to go though domestic violence before. This whole situation must be so frustrating. What a story! Kisses and hugs, sweetie

TheChambrayCountess said...

I am sorry you have experienced being scared and abused and I am sorry that women still have to go through it even though we are "such an advanced" society-- yeesh! I hope your neighbor smokes him out (I didn't think about that pun... are puns appropriate here?) and gets a restraining order if she needs it. I think you are the best thing that has happened to your neighbors, btw.

Lisa - respect the shoes said...

When I first moved to NM way back when, the couple in the apartment directly above me were in a similar-ish situation. I'd hear screaming and arguing all the time and was even driving home behind them one when their car started swerving (sp?) out of control because they were in there fighting. The last of it was when I got woken up on a Saturday to sounds of them arguing and her screaming, so obviously something back was up. I had to call the police three times before they showed up and tried going up there myself but my then-BF wouldn't let me. I'm with you, I think as citizens of the earth, we need to care about each other more and try to make a difference!

Courtney Erin said...

I've experienced something like this (okay, not really like this but an abusive former boyfriend who I was lucky enough to not ever live with) and it is really disgusting that nothing seems change - but I also firmly believe that, in spite of how much we like to pat ourselves on the back and say women are equal, we still live in a society where we are treated, at best, as second class citizen (witness pervasive pay inequity for example and the law's persistent refusal to help us much) and, at worst, as objects who are less than full human beings (witness the continued expansion of things like pornography and the seemingly accepted sexual exploitation of women in our culture). So all I can say is that a) I'm disgusted, indignant, and righteously angry b) I'm sadly not surprised and c) thank god you were around.

xoxo ~ Courtney
http://sartorialsidelines.blogspot.com

ChinkyGirLMeL said...

This just makes me sick. Violence against women is a big no no for me. It doesn't always have to be physical violence but emotional and mental violence is just as worse. I pray for this woman, your neighbor. Do you have to put up a surveillance camera just to have raw evidence to help this woman? Why do people always turn a blind eye?

Josie said...

This is insane, Carrie. To begin with, I'm so proud of you for doing something when you spotted this issue. That's so brave and definitely the right thing to do. But I find it ridiculous that the police reacted like they did -- isn't it their job to protect and serve?
xo Josie

Torrie said...

My cousin and her ex husband went through a very nasty divorce. On one occasion, as she was walking out the door (with the children present), she asked him to give her the money that he had promised. (They were already separated, and she was dropping the kids off to see him.) He whispered something extremely profane, and she dropped the pumpkin that she was carrying- and told him 'where he could go.' This incident resulted in a restraining order (on her), a huge court battle of him claiming that she "threw" pumpkins at him, at his car... claimed that she caused major damage on his car (even though she- nor the pumpkin- never even touched the car- or him!).

Although he has abused her (in horrific ways), he claimed to be "afraid of her destructive behavior." In several court appearances to follow, he continued to be seen as the stable one, and her the "crazy" one.

I could really go on and on here, but just wanted to weigh in and say that what you're righting about (the discrimination) is so very accurate, and happens all of the time. Just because these "sociopaths" can make themselves appear calm and collected- right-minded and stable, they always manage to squeeze themselves out of trouble, whereas the women- who are scared, frazzled, etc, appear as crazy, unstable, emotional basket cases (never receiving the proper protection or respect that they truly need).

Crazy.

justagirlLaura said...

This is beyond maddeningly frustrating! I cannot believe how terribly one-sided and wrapped in red tape our law enforcement agencies can be. I pray for these women and hope there is a better solution out there in the future.

I have a sort of similar story in that my best friend in college was abused by her boyfriend (also my friend). We were 21, maybe not even, and I had no idea what to do. When he finally punched her in the face (after doing so much, but not as physically violent) a different friend and I decided to report him to the police without her knowledge. We called the police and told them our situation, how we were not present for the actual violence, but had the bloody rag she had used and pictures of her bruises and black eye. "What do we do?" we asked. Get ready for this... the motherfucker (pardon my french) on the other line told us to "MIND OUR OWN BUSINESS!" Can you believe that?!? To this day it still makes my blood boil.

After a lot of back and forth with this guy, I am happy to say she doesn't speak to him anymore, and she is happily married to a different and much better man.

hip hip gin gin said...

Oh my god. I'm sick to my stomach reading this. White hot rage.

I can't even get started on how I feel about this example, or the general status of the treatment of women in this world. Because if I start I will end up crashing the comment box for length of tirade, and probably scare the dog with my yelling.

I will say that I am so tired. Tired of being told that everything is fixed, and we are "equal now", and there are no more gender problems, and to generally pipe down. SO tired. Because I look around and I could swear things aren't better, they're worse. All the bad things are still happening, STILL in bloody 2011 (!), only now no one even opens doors for us anymore.

I hope your neighbor went to the police and filed a report and charges and got a restraining order. More than anything I hope she is safe and back in her home. Thinking of her out there alone while he squats in her house makes me honestly want to vomit.

Kai.Mercado. said...

It is hard to be an observer of this, and once again I am so in awe of your strength. This was happening to a roommate of mine, in my own house. We were terrified for her, and of him, but didn't have the strength to do what you did. I had never dealt with anything like that before, and we didn't know how to handle it. But, I know now not to just sit and let this happen.

I am seriously shocked an appalled by the police reaction. It makes me so angry. I want to call your police and tell them they are idiots!

kimbirdy said...

as a part of my psychology training we took extensive domestic violence classes. conducting therapy with battered women is such a tender topic, precisely because this scenario is riddled with mind-blowing absurdity. it has only been in recent years when the government decided violence against a female spouse/partner was a crime. throughout the history of our country, right up through the 80's and 90's, a man could confess he beat his woman to the cops, but if she was "his woman" the law saw it as a private issue and wouldn't step in. about 5-ish years ago, CA state law went into effect where if the cops saw any sign of abuse, they could arrest the abuser without the woman pressing charges. most other states, however, require the woman to request her abuser be arrested as well as showing signs of being abused. who, in their fear and complicated relationship, is going to request their spouse be arrested? it is Mess Up. it's really sad to think how they responded last night is a huge improvement to how things have been. we still have so far to go.

there's also an extreme problem of blaming the victims which is prevalent in our society. if she stayed we would say it was her fault for staying, but if she does what we teach kids, to walk away for safety reasons, we say it's her fault for not providing a report. hello! any way you slice it, it's HIS fault for throwing various forms of abuse her way, not hers. do you watch "southland?" i only just started it, but one of the female cops says how sick she is of the war on women. she says, "if all these cases of abuse against women were cases against muslims we would have all sorts of laws taking a stand against the violence." it's so true to think about how we protect all classes of people, but women don't ever seem to make the cut. society likes to call us the "weaker" sex, but when it comes to crimes against us, society says, "well it's your fault. you are choosing this. you are grown and can decide to leave if you want to." as if it's that easy.

oh man, this is such a personal issue for me, since i've dealt with a lot of domestic abuse with friends, family members, and clients. the best thing we can all do if we know someone in a situation like this is to be supportive. understand that they have reasons to stay, please don't use language implying blame, and keep reporting any kind of violence you witness. for this situation maybe you can file a report at the police station instead of calling 911? it seems like if they get enough reports on file against him, then they'll have to count for something.

Kara said...

Luckily, I've never dealt with abuse, but I can say that I live in a shady neighborhood as well- cops have been called time and time again, but nothing ever seems to be fixed. It's sad that the people who live it and see wrong being done everyday have no credibility when giving statements to the police... I just don't understand.

Taylor said...

WOW, I am shocked. By law, at least here in Chicago, if he is NOT on the lease or deed of the house and she wants him to leave he has to. I do see where they need to to speak out thought, as F-d up as that is, I don't agree, but I can see the need for it.

Please stay away so he doesn't do anything to you, and grab the lady - She is obviously on the right track just not there yet! This makes me sad, really really sad.

The Suburb Experiment said...

I'm a 911 dispatcher so. . . while I don't think what that operator said was cool, in a way he was right. I'm not familiar with CA laws but here unless the police can talk to the other party (and not a 3rd party) their hands are kind of tied. If she's not calling 911 or there to talk to them they can't do much.

I know it seems wrong but the laws are in place to protect citizens from (vengeful) false reports. Police agencies have been sued for a lot less. If they had hauled the guy off and then his gf came home with a change of heart insisting nothing had occured (which happens A LOT) the police department could face some trouble.

We've had a lot of situations where we get 911 calls from citizens reporting a woman getting hit by a man. When the officers arrive she insists that it didn't happen and if the officers can't see any marks they can't do anything. They have to have probable cause and not just hearsay. They know she's lying and it's frustrating that she's protecting him.

this free bird said...

Here's my problem: HIS false reports, the pot seeping out of his home--he's higher than a kite and out of control jumping around everywhere. I get where you're coming from (my bro was 911 before becoming a firefighter and some of the stories were just nuts)--but the 911 person I spoke to was absolutely pro-the man and ridiculed the woman for not calling in.

It is outside the realm of some people to understand the terror and frenzy an abused woman feels. It is paralyzing. You become someone you never thought you were and your thinking gets turned upside down. You literally think backwards--wrong behavior (concealing the truth) becomes right in your mind. I'll get off the soapbox, but really do appreciate hearing it from your side. Thanks so much for weighing in!

Katie said...

I've been sitting here looking at this post for a long time, reading the comments people have left, and I'm just as speechless (if not more) than when I first read it. It's unbelievable that a woman (or anyone) can go through this, that it can be reported, and that it's just ignored.

The Suburb Experiment said...

I think the operator that you spoke to's attitude is inexcusable. I'm trying to figure out a way to put it that doesn't minimize the professional and caring demeanor that lots of 911 operators have. There's a lot of burnout in dispatching and some people stay way past their expiration date. It's tiring sending officers to the same homes over and over again. 911 calls all start to sound the same. Unfortunately, some dispatchers can't be stay in the mindset that they are there to help people and they pass their shitty judgements on through their attitude. I'm sorry that you had that experience.

Jenn

Val said...

Wow, I'm so sorry you had to go through this. =( Thinking of you.

this free bird said...

Jenn I think you're rad. My brother really helped me to understand the plight of the 911 operator (really lady? it's Thanksgiving and your oven's failed so you can't cook the bird and you've called 911? TRUE STORY)

And I do understand the predicament the officers were in...there's no way they didn't know the guy was nuts. I just wish they would have stuck around to watch the back and forth. Nothing like watching someone's belongings get tossed out their own window. Blarg

Dancing Branflake said...

Blood. Boiling. Oh my goodness. And to know you were a victim of domestic violence makes my heart ache so bad. I am so sorry this is happening.

Judy C said...

I sometimes hate the cops. Her house. He doesn't belong there. I hope she gets rid of him pronto.

Lisa Lisa Lisa said...

I am disgusted. There really is nothing to say. It isn't okay, it isn't acceptable.

Meanwhile, she probably couldn't call in because her phone and her keys were in the home she was locked out of. But yeah, TOTALLY her fault!

la petite coquine said...

Oh, hell. I first thought of our own neighbor drama just a few months ago, but the truth is, that wasn't the first time I've experienced domestic violence. My dad had a breakdown fall/winter of 2008, and just days before Christmas, locked me out of our house in sub zero temps wearing my pajamas, slippers and (thank God) a heavy shearling coat. He absolutely refused to let me back in, and I ended up walking several miles to a dear friend of the family's house. While we didn't call the police that night, it was just a preview. And it was horrible.

While my dad's breakdown was temporary, and he has since recovered and apologized profusely over and over and over again, violence like that isn't easy to get over, and it's hard to break that cycle. I hope that she can find strength, support and shelter in someone else, and stands up to her abuser in order to take back control.


Oh, hell.

Tara @ Haute Lunch said...

Oh my goodness! This is just awful! I can't believe the cops/911 dispatcher. Definitely something wrong with the system! I've never had to experience anything like this first hand, but I am always disgusted when I hear stories about the woman being blamed. It's just horrible.

JessRaquel said...

Wow. I'm just speechless. I'm a survivor of domestic abuse also and this makes me sick. I once had the cops called on me and my current boyfriend when we had a very loud argument (never anything physical of course) and the cops did tell my boyfriend that even though I wasn't on a lease or anything, if I so much as have a toothbrush there then I have a right to be there.

If there is multiple witnesses though to physical abuse, I can't believe the police would be on his side. Shame on them.

Kristin said...

That makes me sick to my stomach. It's so disturbing that they wouldn't remove him. So, if she goes to HER own home, she's in danger. Awesome. Broken...broken...system indeed. And I'm so sorry that you to go through that in your life!

Marie a la Mode said...

Unbelievable! Why does she stay with him??? The answer to that would be sad to hear.

FRANKIE HEARTS FASHION said...

this is so frickin disturbing!! What the hell is wrong with our system?! This just makes me so angry...I'm sorry that she had to go through this and I hope she can get away from this giant a-hole! I'm sorry that you had to experience DV too Carrie...having heard all of the stories from my grandma about how bad the violence was on her and my father I just have no tolerance for it. It's just so so sad...

Bonnie said...

This makes me sick. I could seriously barf right now out of disgust for the criminal justice system.
Rest easy knowing that you did the right thing and that you did all you could.

http://www.glamkittenslitterbox.com/
Twitter: @GlamKitten88

Lori said...

Holy crap Carrie ~ this is just CRAZY!! How many women have to end up dead before they smarten up ~ really... I have never been through anything like this personally but my heart goes out to those who have. xo

My Heart Blogged said...

While I have never been a victim of domestic violence I lived with an emotionally abusive, and manipulative step father for almost 6 years of my life. He was bi-polar, and had sever anger issues. He would yell at us for hours on end, about things like dishes. Call me horrible names, and say disgusting things. He did beat his son but not my brother, and I. I had to leave in 11th grade because he threw a plastic bottle at me one day when I said some choice words to him. I left the next day to make sure he would never put his hands on me, and my brother left shortly after. It took my mother 3 and half more years to finally divorce him. I'm glad that I was strong enough to leave, and he has a special place in hell someday.

MerciBlahBlah said...

Carrie - as a fellow survivor of domestic violence, I wholeheartedly agree with what you said about the way you begin thinking while you are going through it. You second guess everything, you fear everything, you never know what will set off your abuser. It's a horrific way to live. To those who will always say, "Why doesn't she just LEAVE him???" all I can say is, if you haven't been through it, you will never know it's not as simple as "just leaving him." Thank God your neighbor has you there on her side, whether she knows it or not.

Shannan

ruthy ann said...

wow...eerie...I guess I'm not sure if calling the police would've been any help at all?!

I had no idea you survived this. I'm so glad you're out of it...that you had the strength and courage to leave.

What the hell is wrong with people?

Elizabeth said...

Reading though your post and the comments your readers have left has me absolutely sick. While I don't personally know anyone affected by this type of thing, I worked in an inner-city ER when I was younger and saw too many domestic violence cases to count. I saw injuries that were months and years old in all stages of healing and hated that these women didn't have the support systems to help them realize they deserve respect from the men in their lives. It crushed me to see discharged victims of violence call their abusers to be picked up. Where were their friends, mother, aunts, ect. I think the most important thing for people to do is be an advocate for the mistreated women in their lives. Stand up for that woman affected because clearly when you're in it, you might not have the strength or the means to fight for yourself. I commend you for doing the right, and difficult thing, and contacting the police. I could go on and on about my problems with their response time from a medical and legal standpoint but that's a whole other story.

Peetzi Jen said...

First of all, Carrie, YOU are a beautiful person. If only the world had more individuals like YOU!!

I come from a family of law enforcement. And there are many many cops who do what they do because they WANT to make the world a better place. But it is also my experience that there are many cops who take the authority that goes with this job to another level. My father has been a police officer for 40 years. And he's amazing at his job. So I grew up assuming that the rest of the world functioned with the same integrity and ethics my father has always had. It makes me sad to see/hear stories like this because it really is the individuals handling the situation that make it so very wrong. It has nothing to do with the way law enforcement is supposed to work. It comes down to not wanting to be bothered with what they see as an unimportant issue. They "believe" what he has to say because it's the easy way out. If they were the kind of cops they should be, they would put more then 1 minute of effort into the situation and haul that jackhole's ass in.

It's just sad. But you keep doing what you do and stay true to your values! Whether it's the 1st call or the 15th call that makes the difference, it doesn't matter.
All that will matter is getting her out of that situation for good!

Dale said...

I've seen a few people in situations like this and this story is so sad especially since you witnessed the whole thing and the abuse. Hopefully she will get strong enough to leave him, that's the only way the violence will stop. Because men like this do not change for the most part. Also, usually police have a zero tolerance for violence against women, so this is really sad to hear they did the wrong thing with your neighbors. Hopefully their fighting won't ruin your night anytime in the near future. Nice post, these topics are important

xoDale

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