|Forum topic by mot||posted 08-29-2007 08:12 PM||1402 views||0 times favorited||41 replies|
08-29-2007 08:12 PM
On or about July 27, we awoke to find my wife’s truck stolen, personal items, golf clubs and assorted things missing. This is a surreal experience if I’ve ever had one. Wake up, look out the garage, see the doors open, truck gone. Dammit!
I phone the police. Nice gal, the dispatcher. She takes some information that I soon realize I’m going to have to repeat 47 times, but she said an officer is on the way. We live in a small town and the police station is about a 3 wood away, so I wait. And wait. And wait. I look out the window and see a police car drive by the house. Hmmmm. I go outside and the police car comes by again. I wave. She looks at me and continues to drive by. Hmmmm. I wave my arms at her. She’s not looking anymore. I get annoyed. I phone the dispatch and say, “I’m glad I’m not getting bonked on the head.” She’s humorless now, but states that she’ll inform the officer to look for my frantic waving on the driveway.
Four police officers come. Really nice kids, all of them. I’m sure 1 of them might have been born by the time I’d finished university. The others, I’m not so sure. All pleasant though. Cheerfulness that comes with youth, a summer day, and a cool job. Experienced? Not so much. Anyway, they go on to tell me that 1 to 2 vehicles a week are being stolen out of this area. Hmmmm. They go on to tell me that they live clse by and would certainly never leave anything out of a locked garage. Hmmmm. You see, in healthcare, it’s the equivalent of telling someone they have something really rare. It’s not comforting.
Realizing the things that are missing, I’m getting more and more agitated. Watching the bunglings of new officers as they try and go CSI on my garage gave me a pain behind my eye. I said nothing. I love to see enthusiasm, and after all, I was 12 once too.
Now, this garage is alarmed by one of the more prominent monitored companies. The alarm didn’t’ go off. I’m perturbed and call the alarm company. They start falling all over themselves about that. Can’t have a break in with an alarm that doesn’t sound. I get to spend my entire Saturday going through diagnostics with an alarm tech. He concludes that it’s functioning normally, but not installed correctly. As it was the alarm company that installed it, I’m really getting mad. They say it’s a contracted installation so they can do nothing about it but hook it up right and hope things go along swimmingly from that point. There’s that pain behind my eye again.
We get a call from a good samaritan. He found some of my wife’s ID thrown by the side of a road. He’s a cool guy because he even called the credit card company to inform that he had found the card. Nice guy. He phones, we speak, and ask him to take the stuff to the local police where he lives and we’ll go from there. We get a call from a constable that states a fairly lengthy and detailed inventory of the things this man dropped off. I make arrangements to go get them.
Blowing off another entire day, but this time dragging my poor kids along with me, we go to fetch this stuff. Upon arriving at the detachment, they can’t find the stuff. Nowhere to be found. Can’t find the guy I spoke to. He’s not answering his phone. We wait, and wait, and wait. My 2 year old son is ready to chew his arm off to escape. The officer comes in and can’t find the stuff either. It turns out that the property was mistakenly given to someone else, but they didn’t record who they gave it to. Hmmmm. Pain behind my eye. I say, “You guys are the elite. The feds. The real deal. What the hell do you mean you gave it to someone else?” Anyway, if you thought they weren’t helpful before, point out the specifics of their screw up and they get even less helpful. We went to Chucky Cheeses for a couple of hours to placate my son.
Our truck was recovered that Monday. The same officer who lost our goods called and said he had good news. Our truck was recovered. The theives drove it into a pond, but it doesnt’ look to bad. Pain behind my eye again. “It doesn’t look too bad?” Anyway, we call our insurance company, give them the location of the yard it was towed to and then we wait. You see, we can’t go get it until the insurance company looks at it. They were quite happy to inform us that they are dealing with many other customers and are very busy. They’ll get it to it when they can. I can only sigh at this point.
Two days later, we have heard nothing. I call the insurance company. She says, “Is that the truck that is at——” I said, “I don’t know? Is it?” I really didn’t know. I’m not sure what she said and thought it was some insurance company specific lingo. She replies back, “How can you NOT know?” I told her, “I’m not all that savvy about being robbed, I’ll do a better job next time.” She says, “We have a zero abuse policy in dealing with telephone inquiries,” and hangs up on me. There’s that pain behind my eye again.
After talking with another insurance person, we get the truck towed to the local dealer who is supposed to do a mechanical inspection and clean the truck. Fine. Two days later, we hear nothing. I go down to the dealership and the service manager says, “We haven’t seen it yet. Has it been towed here?” I just blink. I want to say, “While I’ve been holding station on your lot for the last two days, I haven’t seen it either.” I hold my tongue and ask him to call me when it gets there.
Just for fun, I drive around the lot. There’s the truck. It’s sitting in the rain with all it’s windows open. The body shop says it’s been here for two days and why haven’t I picked it up. The pain behind my eye is becoming a permanent fixture now. I call the service guy back and tell him. He says he’ll handle it. Two weeks went by and we didn’t hear anything. Nothing from the alarm company, nothing from the police, nothing from the insurance company. The pain behind my eye, now affectionately named Sharon, has subsided so I start making calls again.
The alarm company hasn’t gotten a report from the inspector yet. Great. The police haven’t figured out who they gave my stuff too yet. Great. The truck hasn’t been detailed but the mechanical inspection is done. We still can’t get it. Great. I go buy another one and sell that one. It’s proving to be too much of a hassle.
Now the icing on the cake. Yesterday, I get a photo radar ticket in the mail. This truck, the afternoon of the theft, speeding through a school zone. The irony in that…well one of the several, is that a truck reported stolen and whose license plate was canceled, was ticketed 8 hours after it was reported stolen and we get the ticket. I’m going to court on this. I’m sure I can write a letter, but I think it might be fun to tell my story. I know the judge. He’s going to cringe when I come in. I don’t think he’ll toss me for contempt though. It might be fun.
Cheers, and here’s my new rules of theft prevention:
1. Don’t leave anything in your car. Don’t leave insurance, registration, nothing. Have a little duffel bag or knapsack that contains all of your information and car stuff that hangs by the door. Take it with you when you leave.
2. If you’re going to leave your vehicle outside. After you follow rule #1, leave it unlocked. If they are going to steal it, your lock isn’t slowing them down. If they want to rifle through it, you may find that it saves you the hassle of replacing your windows or door locks.
Have a great weekend everyone!
-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)