Thursday, February 04, 2010

2:10 AM and Counting

With the wailing of the siren filling the air, I was not sure if Tim had answered me or not, as I made my way through broken glass that littered the floor from the now empty door-frame that I had entered the building through. Moments later my heart was in my throat as I came face to face with two culprits who were coming out of the stockroom, their arms filled with stolen merchandise.
The situation that I now found myself in had started a half-hour earlier at 2:10 AM at my home, where I had been sound asleep when the phone rang. I awoke and immediately knew that there was trouble in one form or another, that awaited me on the other end of the phone line. The last time was several years ago, when a 4:00am phone call awoke me, and upon answering it, my daughter Jennifer was on the other end of the line, and wanted me to come over because she had fallen off the roof of her house and had broken her arm. Don't ask, it's a long story. Picking up the phone and answering it, I was greeted by the alarm company that monitors the shop that I work out of. Upon hearing that a alarm had been triggered at our midtown location, I said that I would head down to check it out.
Now I have to tell you that over the years, I have responded to a number of alarms at our different locations, and I have become somewhat of a expert as to what I expect to find when I get there. In this case, I expected it to be a false alarm (quite unusual) as the time (2:10am) was to early for a break in, as there is a fair amount of activity on the streets at that time. I have noted over the years that normally any time between 3:00am and 5:00am is when I have been awoken by our alarm company to check on a tripped alarm. Now its quite amazing as to what came down when I arrived on the scene at 2:30am. I had not really rushed as I drove in through heavy fog that blanketed the city. Upon arriving, I noticed that there was a Ford F250 pick-up parked parallel to the west entrance. Now this is where it got interesting, as I assumed that the truck belonged to Tim my store manager who has a identical truck. Seeing the security shutters dislodged from the frame they are mounted in, and the broken window gaping open, I knew it was for real and the siren wailing from within the store confirmed it. Under normal circumstances, I would never have entered the building until the police had secured the building. My mistake was assuming that the alarm company had got hold of Tim, and he had arrived ahead of me. Unknown to me, and this is amazing, the culprits were still inside removing merchandise and loading the pickup which turned out to be stolen. I find it amazing because these guy's know they only have a small window before the police arrive, and by now they had been in the building for a minimum of a half hour, other than trips out to their stolen ride, carrying merchandise that they were removing from our stockroom, having broken down that door also. So, upon entering the store and coming face to face with the culprits, I am not sure who was more shocked, myself or them. I immediately assessed the situation and made a run for the broken doorway with them hot on my tail. Once outside, I dived in to my truck that was parked on the far side of their ride. The two culprits jumped into the stolen pick-up through the passenger side door and the driver slammed the truck in to gear and with his foot to the floor and with the truck fish-tailing crazily, they pulled out on to 42nd avenue and were gone. As they pulled away, I had the licence plate number memorized and was calling 911 on my cell-phone. Shortly there-after the first police car arrived with several more patrol cars soon there-after, and followed by a CSI type crime-scene team arriving a half hour later. To make a long story short, I did not leave for home until noon. At that point I realized that the sun had come out and with the fog having lifted, the city was stunning in its fresh coating of hoar-frost and crystal blue skies. Did I go home to bed you ask? What, are you crazy! I stopped long enough to pick up my camera gear, and went back out chasing after photos created by the fog. After all, one does have his priorities you realize!

No comments yet