In Part I of our thrilling look at my car being broken into, we left me standing at the car, staring dumbly at the wreckage of my passenger side window, having realized that the thief had left my camping stuff alone (quite possibly because he read my tales of camping and realized he should stick with hotels. Also, I assume it was a he, though I have nothing to support this conclusion, as (spoiler alert for the same thing I spoiled in Part I), the perpetrator of this crime has not yet been apprehended).
After the initial shock of seeing my car sitting on a street with the door open and window broken, I came to one pretty obvious conclusion: I should not have left my iPod sitting out on the console, as I was pretty sure upon my glance into the car that it was the only thing missing from the car. And, quite likely, what had inspired the break in to start (then again, as my friend Kaylan reminded me later in the evening via text, I previously had someone break into my car (OK, not so much “break into my car” as “open up the unlocked door of the car and take stuff”), who took some random change and a bag of toiletries, while leaving an iPod sitting out on the exact same console. Thus, I had been lulled into a false sense of security with regard to thieves and iPods).
Two police officers were near the car; they had seen it had been broken into when they reported to work on the parade route, and were hoping to find the victim of the break-in (a.k.a., me). However, as they were working the parade, they couldn’t actually do anything other than act concerned and call in the crime, so they told me I would have to wait for a different police officer to arrive to get a report taken. After calling in the theft, and making sure that I was aware I should not touch anything, they walked the block over to the parade route, and left me to watch the crime scene.
Watching the crime scene quickly became story time, as it seemed nearly every person who came by and was at least somewhat sober (at Mardi Gras, this was maybe 25% of the passers-by) had a story to tell me of either (a) their car being broken into while at the parades, or (b) their car being stolen while at the parades. I quickly determined (a) that, of these options, I preferred the one that had happened to me, and (b) when people talk of crime in New Orleans, they evidently are not kidding.
Now, despite having called in the crime, the next police officer did not seem to be in any hurry to show up. The concerned parade-working police officers came by again, and suggested I call 911 to hurry the process along. Recognizing that, while it was a crime, my break-in was definitely not an emergency (and therefore an inappropriate use of 911), I asked the officer for the non-emergency line, and called it in that way. Yay, civic responsibility!
One more non-emergency line call and an hour or so later, and I had the second set of officers show up. Although, really, it was just one officer. He took a police report, and we chatted while he wrote out the report. While discussing the only item missing from the car (my iPod), I suggested that the perpetrator had better like Jimmy Buffett, as that was like 90% of the music on the iPod. Lucky criminal!
Shortly after finishing up the police report, the detectives/third set of police officers showed up. Now, I was kind of excited about this part, which was going to be the fingerprinting of the car. And by “kind of,” I mean that I kept talking about it whenever anyone would listen to me from pretty much the moment that the first set of officers told me there would be fingerprints taken, because I have obviously watched far to much CSI, and therefore this was definitely going to be the highlight of the whole process for me.
Sadly, after fingerprinting the car, there were no usable fingerprints, and therefore my crime has no known suspects, and will likely never have any known suspects, unless someone sees a person carrying around an iPod with my name engraved on the back.
The detective looking for fingerprints. It was just like on CSI. Except that he didn’t get any good fingerprints. And the perpetrator remains at large. Oh, and no one was killed in the process. That last one is important.
After failing to get a fingerprint and identify our suspect, the police left me to clean up a very glass-filled car, and head back to the hotel. It was sort of anti-climactic (particularly after the excitement of the fingerprinting).
The rock used to break the window, found while bringing everything from the car into the hotel room for safekeeping, as the car was obviously not secure after this incident, what with missing an entire window. As I didn’t get any actual throws (the various items the riders toss from the floats) that night as part of the parades, I’m considering this my official (and only) throw from that night. It proved a costly throw, so the least I can do is keep it.
Happily, I got the window fixed first thing on the morning after the parades, and the car is back to normal. And, obviously, the whole incident could have been far worse. Still, I will never hear someone say “Mardi Gras rocks!” without thinking of it (and yes, I named this post and the last post solely to get that last bit in here).