Thursday, October 26, 2006

Doggone it!!

And I had stronger words than that yesterday. For the second time in three months I have been the victim of a crime. Last July, my purse was taken out of my car in my garage. Yes, we were stupid to leave our garage door open and it was dumb to leave my purse in the car. But in Mukilteo, it used to be that nothing would happen if you made such a mistake. You didn't need to worry about someone walking into your garage in the middle of the night. Mukilteo has made the local area news because of significantly increased thievery this year.

Yesterday, my friend and I were walking our dogs in Meadowdale State Park in Edmonds. The lovely beach park is a 10 minute drive from my house. It is a gorgeous bit of preserved gulch with a salmon stream flowing down into the Sound. Huge trees and dense foliage line the 1 1/2 mile trail. We parked at the trail head parking lot.

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Apolo and Max in front of a previously logged tree that never died.

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Whidbey Island from Meadowdale.

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Looking back toward Mukilteo from the beach.

Since I learned my lesson last July, we left nothing of value in the car. My camera and wallet were with me. And yet, after our three mile hike at 11 AM, upon return to my vehicle, I noticed that the back side door window had been smashed in. Glass was all over the place and all over the inside of the car. The seats had been down to transport our two big dogs, and they were all pulled up. Clearly, someone had looked in every nook and cranny for a wallet or purse.

What is going on? Petty crime seems to be rampant around here lately. Law enforcement does nothing about it. Whoever is doing this never gets caught. Rather than step up efforts to prevent it, the word is "keep your doors locked; leave the lights on; keep your valuables with you." In other words, the burden is on the victims or potential victims to prevent the crimes. I did everything right yesterday but I am still dealing with about $300 in property damage and a big hassle to get it fixed. Plus, I can't use the car for about five days until the glass comes in to the Honda dealer.

What is going on? Law enforcement does not have enough funding or enough staff. At the trail head, yesterday, as I stood in a pile of glass, I was told the sheriff would not be able to get there for hours so it was best to mail in my complaint! Is it kids? Is it drugs? Are kids out of control knowing they will never be caught and never have to suffer any consequences? I am angry. We shouldn't have to live like this---in constant fear that our property will be damaged or stolen in Mukilteo and Edmonds.

I refuse to be a victim. So what do we do about it?

What can be done?