This is my neighbor Andre. He actually lives across the street. I usually say hi and wave to him while I am walking the dogs. He seems to like Hambone. A lot of black men gravitate towards Hambone. Andre runs a lot. I see him around here and there wearing his red shorts and white basketball t-shirt. He has a sheepish smile and a little shallow scar on his forehead. I’d imagine he’s lived in the neighborhood for about 3 or 4 years.
That’s about 12 years less than how long he’s been on the US Marshalls 15 most wanted fugitive list. Well for his first killing, at least. Then he was living in New York and he killed his sister in an argument over money. I guess once you break the seal on that type of an activity, well it just makes the next one that much easier. He probably felt that when he kidnapped and killed his girlfriend in 2002.
I wonder if his (now) girlfriend thinks about this when they have a disagreement. I mean one of the things I really like about being with my boyfriend is that there isn’t that level of finality to our arguments. There is no “Thunderdome – two men enter- one man leaves” type atmosphere. We expect that we’ll both walk away (thinking we were right the whole damn time). I like that.
So Meg – my new BBF (best bartender friend) AND normal neighbor is the one that tipped me off to this whole story. It seems a US Marshall came knocking at her door like the Ammo Avon Lady and asked her some questions. She was smart enough to not put herself in the middle of things. But she got inside intelligence that (in my mind) totally legitimized the whole story. Enough so that she mentioned that the *bust would happen last Wednesday night/morning between 3 and 4 am. So I did what any professional adult would do and ran home like a lunatic to tell my whole house and then stand in the yard giddily laughing about how exciting it was and nonchalantly pointing at the guy’s house with our elbows. I set my alarm for 3 am and sat on the kitchen floor with Thor awaiting a 24 style swat invasion to descend on my quiet street.
My intention was to have the invasion happen and do the following: 1). wake up Yenny (she was asleep in the office waiting to do the second shift/watch) 2). Run out into the front yard with the flip video camera and create an instant stand-up 3). Do a thoughtful testimonial about how “Crofton MD is a gem of a community where you can watch kids happily riding their bikes to the pool, where you can explore the exotic flora and fauna, a family place, …a place you could call home.”
All this while the hovering helicopters light up the swat teams as they serpentine through the bushes of front yards and cop cars skid into view. Loud voices yelling through megaphones accompanied by barking dogs …and maybe a burning mini-van in the background. I think it would have been a HUGE hit on You-Tube. Maybe not a resume reel to get me into the Crofton Garden Club…but whatever.
Well Thor and I fell asleep on the floor of the kitchen after suspecting every single car that drove past our house (Is that an undercover agent?) (Is that guy a plant?). I left a cryptic paper towel note on the counter to prove that I had attempted my first stake-out – however pathetic it was. And went back to bed.
Last night I dropped by to see Meg and she informed me that they got him the next day on the way to his car. I was almost depressing that we no longer had a violent criminal in the neighborhood. I’d have to go back to TV until the next “Crompton Gang War” or whatever could potentially be next. God don’t let it be the snakehead fish again. That was gross.