It’s The Principle (or is it?)

I haven’t written anything in a while, which is an indicator of just how busy I’ve been of late.  To be honest, this blog entry is just a short write-up so I can do a little venting regarding an incident that happened recently.  Tuesday night (11/30/2009) sometime between 9 PM and Midnight, somebody stole my car.  I became pretty upset when my wife and I realized that it was missing.  To be honest, while the risk of living in an urban city such as San Jose has always been in the back of my mind, I still did not fathom or foresee this happening to me.  I guess it was just a matter of time.

The chronology is as follows:

1) At about 12 Midnight, I had stepped outside of my house in the East Side of San Jose, intending to move my little car (a ’90 Civic hatchback) to the driveway, inside a closed gate.  With my wife with me, we did not see the car parked on the street directly in front of the house and soon realized it was missing (presumably stolen).

2) We immediately called 911 and spoke to the dispatcher.  We had asked whether the City had towed my car, but soon were requesting for the police to show up to file a report.  The police arrived in about 20 minutes following the call, and within the next 20 minutes, the report was in.  The officer’s instructions were for us to call 911 if we happen to see the car on the street, and otherwise leave it to the police to deal with.

3) Following the visit with the police, I decided to drive around and see if I could find the car.  Inside of 30 minutes, I did as it was parked on the street next to a nearby elementary school.  A quick phone call to the police, followed by a brief examination of the car and collection of evidence, and I have the car back in my possession.

4) It turns out that after closer examination, the car seems not too badly off, with the only significant damage being the forcible removal of two mounted speakers from the rear of  the car.  The radio seemed intact, along with the battery, lights, and most everything else. In the end, except for some cheap speakers, I guess I lucked out (I have since learned that the radio is disabled in a way I can’t easily fix).

In retrospect, though, I don’t feel lucky.  I feel victimized.  I feel violated.  I feel like someone out there has hurt me, and I am not sure how to resolve this for myself.

For now, my only recourse was to ensure that the car alarm works, and to have bought a club.  There’s no morale lesson here, no shining beacon of truth.  Someone out there got the better of me and I now feel the worse for it. 

It’s just strange.  I have had this car for about two years and this is the fourth time it has been messed with while I’ve had it.  To recap, incidents include:

1) Late in the Summer of 2008, someone had stolen the front, corner lights off the car (I wound up ordering cheap replacementts for these, as the original lenses were too expensive to replace).

 2) Later that year, someone had broken the rear driver side window (a replacement I found at a local Pick-N-Pull lot). 

3) This year, someone backed into and damaged the rear bumper and fender. This is something not so easy to fix.

4) This last time the whole car was stolen but recovered.

It’s frustrating and I now experience more paranoia than I used to.  I want to say that I feel better about being more aware of how vulnerable my car was, but it doesn’t feel good.  It just adds to my stress.

One thought on “It’s The Principle (or is it?)”

  1. Here is a recent update to the post above. A few months ago, I was contacted by the San Jose Police Department with notification that the individual that stole my car was in custody and was being brought up on charges. It turns out that the fingerprint that he left in the vehicle actually turned up, and that in addition to whatever else he was recently charged with, that the PD was to charge him with theft of my car. It took time (almost 3 years to be exact), but I guess eventually the law catches up. I am just glad he was able to be caught.

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