logo image

Something Strange in the Neighborhood

So, something crazy went down last night in my apartment building, and by now I think I’ve managed to either text, email, call, or Facebook message all of the people I consider close friends or family about the insanity.

Also, I posted the official news story to my Facebook wall, but for those of you who aren’t FB friends with me, here’s the same story that sums up what happened.

I know that crime can happen anywhere, and for the most part I’ve always felt safe inside my apartment, but after finding out that someone was murdered 2 floors below me I’m more than a little freaked out right now.

After spending a delightful time at dinner with a friend this evening talking about the events of last night–among other things– I was able to have a little relief from the thoughts racing through my head, but I’m still trying to process everything.

Sorry for the graphic nature of this photo, but this is still visible in my building and a gruesome reminder of what happened just a few floors down from my apartment. I'm not sure what the rules are about cleaning this up, but hopefully someone from building maintenance will take care of it in the morning... and if not I may break out the bleach spray myself (with several layers of protective gloves).

Sorry for the graphic nature of this photo, but this is still visible in my building and a gruesome reminder of what happened just a few floors down from my apartment. I’m not sure what the rules are about cleaning this up, but hopefully someone from building maintenance will take care of it in the morning… and if not I may break out the bleach spray myself (with several layers of protective gloves).

When I first saw the evidence that I’d slept through something major happening in my building, I didn’t automatically jump to the conclusion that it was a homicide, and was hopeful that maybe someone had just taken a nasty fall which resulted in the blood spattered on the walls in my stairwell. But when I saw crime scene tape dangling from the railing, I knew something bad had taken place.

A few of my neighbors were loitering in the lobby this morning when I went down to take Jasper out, and a nice couple who have always seemed friendly (saying hello and whatnot when passing in the hallway, stairwell, or elevator) stopped what they were doing this morning to speculate with myself and another neighbor about the blood and police tape. The couple said they’ve lived in this building for close to 20 years, and this is the worst thing that’s ever happened during their time here.

At that time, no one really knew the whole story, but one neighbor said he arrived a little after midnight, and was directed to use a different entrance by police officers and crime scene techs who were present. This knowledge of detectives and official crime scene investigators being present instantly triggered me to the very real possibility that someone had died there.

I tried to do my best today to make it through the workday without thinking of the incident, but found myself constantly hitting refresh on various news websites in hopes that I would be able to find out the whole story.

Once I read the timeline of events pieced together, I think the fear of what I had literally just missed really sunk in for me.

According to the news, the victim was shot at 11:45 pm.

This fact is the one that I keep coming back to, because I’d only arrived home about 15 minutes prior, and at around 11:40, Jasper and I were walking up those same stairs after his very brief nightly visit outside before bedtime. Had I stopped to let him dawdle and sniff the grass– as he often likes to do– I might have been walking right into the fight or even have faced the very real possibility that I could have been hit by the bullet if it had gone astray.

I was able to catch the last minute of the news segment where they interviewed other residents in my neighborhood, and I wasn’t surprised to find out that other people are now worried about something like this happening again. I’m not sure how many people will be moving, but I know that priority number one for me tomorrow morning is stopping by my leasing office to find out how I can get out of the lease that I signed just about a month ago.

At this point, I’m not even that concerned with the possibility that I’ll have to pay some kind of penalty to move, because I’d rather feel safe in my surroundings instead of facing this constant nagging in the back of my mind saying “what if?” I mean, because seriously, what if I had let Jasper take his time outside last night? Would something have happened to me?

Since I’m sure it will take a little bit of time to find a new place and move, I think Jasper might be temporarily relocating to my parents’ house for a little vacation, which will eliminate my needing to be outside after dark. I’m not sure that’s really the best decision, because then I’ll be losing my guard dog (he’s no help if I were to be attacked but his hearing is remarkable and he will bark at strange noises), so I’m still working on the pros and cons of that plan.

Hopefully the rest of the week can pass by without any more violence or bad stuff happening in my life. And anyone out there with suggestions of places I should look at, or just ideas in general, feel free to leave them in the comments or let me know privately.

 

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: