Usually I arrive home from work between 4:30 PM and 5:00 PM. However, this past Tuesday evening, December 1st, I went by the grocery store and arrived home at around 6:30 PM. Usually if I know I'm going to be late, I leave the carport and front porch light on. I didn't this past Tuesday, so my house was dark both inside and outside. I have a motion sensitive light on my deck, but you have to go to a certain point before it will come on. After pulling my car into the carport, I opened my car trunk, pulled bags that had fruit in them that I intended to take to work, placed them close to the back of the backseat, fussed around for a few minutes. Then gathered up the remaining six or seven bags. I clicked the car doors as though unlocking them so the headlights would come on and I could see how to step up on the deck without falling. I had my car keys in my left hand. As I got to the steps, I slightly turned to lock my car doors and at the same time realized there was a figure standing there with his right arm raised, I glanced up as he stepped toward me into the headlights glare and I saw a partial face of a man wearing, the thought ran through my mind, a navy hooded sweatshirt type jacket, I think it's called a "hoodie". At this point, his fist connected with my lower jaw, stunning me. I always wondered if ever I was in this type of a situation would I be able to scream or would my voice freeze. I now know I would scream and keep screaming! I started screaming even as he felt among the grocery bags, grabbed the car keys, pushed me to the carport floor, then he raced to the driver's side, jumped in and cranked it. The only time I experienced fear was as I lay on the carport floor, the thought ran through my mind that he could pull the car forward and run over me as I lay in front of the passenger wheel. So I jumped up and got on the side door steps, still screaming. He backed out of the carport, headed east to the stop sign, turned left and headed out of my area. Later two of my neighbors who ran up the hill two blocks over told me he passed them as they ran up the hill.
I continued screaming until my neighbor S, three houses down, ran up the street to my yard at which point she said, "I'm almost there, you can stop screaming now!"
She called 911 and reported the crime and asked for an ambulance as my face was bleeding and I had blood on my face and hands.
He didn't steal my purse as it was still on my left arm, so I reached in and found my spare set of car and house keys. I unlocked the side door and went into my house. At some point, the Sheriff's department asked if I had OnStar, I told S, "Yes". They suggested I call and see if they could track my car. Which S did.
The paramedics arrived, then a deputy Sheriff who looked an awful lot like Wesley Snipes. One of my neighbors even asked if he'd been told that by anyone before. He rolled his eyes and said, "Yes."
The paramedics determined I needed to go to the emergency room for stitches as he had hit me hard enough for my tooth to cut the skin all the way through. It took one stitch on the outside and two on the inside. Plus I had to get a tetanus shot and an antibotic. When I woke up the next day, the area under my eyes had turned black and my mouth was swollen.
One of the best points of OnStar is that they were able to locate my car within twenty minutes enabling the Sheriff's department to find my car within thirty minutes of the crime. It happened at 6:30 PM, they had my car by 7:00 PM. Unfortunately, the person wasn't sitting inside the car. They took my car to the downtown County Sheriff's building. Let it sit overnight, then proceeded to process it as a crime scene. They found two items in the car that wasn't mine as well as being able to lift a good finger print and DNA.
If you don't know your neighbors, make a point to introduce yourself and exchange phone numbers. This will pay off, even if you don't become best friends. They at least know who you are and will be aware you live in the neighborhood! I thank God I had done this! It made a difference!
One thing I won't do in the future, go in through my deck door where my neighbors can't see me and aren't aware I'm having trouble until too late. NEVER leave my house in the winter time without leaving lights on!
Of course, the last two days I haven't been able to talk as I strained my vocal chords, but at least I know how to scream, I mean, neighbors three blocks over head me and came to check on who was screaming and find out why.
Neighbors are really part of your extended family! Get to know them! I found out how wonderful and caring my neighbors are.
Oh, my car, I picked it up today without any damage. I do need to run it through the car wash to remove all that black powder, but hey, such a small thing in the scheme of things!