Violated.

I’m not supposed to share this with you according to our neighborhood president. But, that’s not me.

This site is my connection to the world, and it’s your connection to me. If I am to represent you, I have to be open, honest and transparent.

I went home for lunch today. It’s a short walk across the street. My girlfriend had pulled up in front of my house, and walked over to the office to get me.

We walked back over and into the house. My yellow Nike jacket was on the floor by the bathroom door- which wasn’t the way I left it, but I have my housemate, who sometimes tosses things around. There was a sheet from the back room couch- on the floor in the front room… odd, but still didn’t register. The moment I went into the kitchen- I saw the basement and the backdoor open- and then it registered- someone had broken in. The backdoor had been kicked in, yet the alarm hadn’t gone off.

Ran upstairs- to find my housemate asleep in his room. He’d slept through it. That’s why the alarm wasn’t on.

Call 911, check house for things missing and that no one was in the house still.

Missing are a Sony Playstation PS3 20gb with controller (Sn CE246759709), a bunch of housemate’s games, all our DVD’s and Blu-Rays (about 40 discs and a few boxed sets- Sopranos season 1, Hero’s season 1), a Macintosh 800dp tower S/N XB135oJYKSD (good luck with that), the garage door opener and the keys to my scooter. They also have my black fleece Joe Rocket jacket – bastards.

The evidence tech thinks he got some really good prints. Hadn’t seen Ed Z. for a long time. It felt good to have a friendly face at the scene. Same goes for Justin P.

Housemate (and glad Ed Z. finally figured out that I’m not housemate’s dad) is rather ticked- that he didn’t hear it- and also, that all his games are gone. They took apart my stereo- but when girlfriend pulled up- it must have scared them off. Luckily it’s all still there, but, they would have had a hard time getting rid of that stuff because it’s really uncommon.

I have serial numbers for the PS3 and the computer (which had more passwords on it than an NSA key facility)- so good luck on that.

The door jam is being fixed as I write this. The garage doors have been reprogrammed. But, I still feel empty.

23 years here, and this is the first time someone has come in.

If you’d asked for the movies, the PS3 and told me why you needed them- you could have had them. Same goes for the computer- and I would have given you the passwords and the software.

But, instead, you came into my home and violated my sanctuary.

It’s going to take some time to sort out my emotions right now. My shoulders feel the weight of the world on them.

Onward. And the alarm will be on all the time from now on.

I’m offering a $ reward for tips that lead to the arrest of the people who did this and the return of our property.

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36 Responses

  1. Nathan Driver June 10, 2009 / 2:40 pm
    Sorry to hear about it – getting robbed is never a fun experience and my pov on humanity is usually saddened and hurt.
    Hope you get your stuff back
  2. Larkin June 10, 2009 / 2:47 pm
    Generally, burglaries aren’t personal, just random opportunistic crime. On the other hand, you being you . . .  can Nan Whaley account for her whereabouts at the time of the incident? 

    When I was in college in Boston, we had a pretty bad break in one with a lot of damage, and considerable loss and (of course) no tenant insurance.  In the week following, we straightened up, repainted the kitchen the most beautiful green color and  had a big party. 

    It was remarkable how much better we felt. As counter-intuitive as it may seem do something celebratory.  Don’t let the bastards steal your happiness too. 

  3. Staci June 10, 2009 / 2:53 pm
    I echo Larkin’s comments. I know it stinks…and is unsettling, but reclaim your space in some demonstratable way.  When you do that you get a lot more back.

    Don’t know much about burglary, but know more than my share about reclaiming what is me!

  4. Johnathon Gallienne June 10, 2009 / 3:01 pm
    Hopefully they’re able to catch the person who did this to you. Glad to hear everyone is okay, physically at least, though.
  5. Mitch June 10, 2009 / 3:18 pm
    We were broken into about 9 months ago, same general area. The violation feelings lasted about 1-2 days, then I got mad. Put info on the neighborhood site w/pictures, contacted all local pawn shops, to no avail. However, it helped because I was doing something pro-active! Get pissed & fight back!
  6. J.R.Erwin.CEO June 10, 2009 / 4:33 pm
    David..I lived in Belmont for 20 years.  Got broke into why I was in the back yard with my kids. My youngest son..screamed because..a man was in the bedroom .
    The rat…B…ran and fled.  Two day later…Then FOP Pres. Tom Bennett…a few doors down…came home for lunch and noticed..a window open.  Tom proceeded to look thru his house and in his young daughters bedroom…Tom ~smelled…bad body odor. 
    Tom found the ~rat ~b…lurking in his daughters…closet. 
    Tom should have shot the ~rat ~B…
    The west end scum bragged…all his ~buds..travel the RTA…rob/break in  and get back home ..for the next bus back .
    Of course…the rat ~B..got a few months jail and…realeased to ~rob…again…~~   Go Dayton..~~ 
    David..if you need anything…let me know..!  You might remind the ev.tech…you can get DNA…from a fingerprint..~~ 
  7. Barbara June 10, 2009 / 5:42 pm
    David,
    Let me speak from experience when I say, “The feeling of being violated passes.”  I came home (E. Fifth & Terry) from work to find my front door kicked in and my home ransacked and burgled in broad daylight.  My first fear was that they shot or hurt my dog, but even though the front door was standing wide open, she was still cowering under the bed upstairs. 
    Larkin is right.  You might not think so, but you have much to celebrate.  Nobody got hurt, and ‘stuff’ can eventually be replaced.  It still sucks, though.  When you work hard for the things you have, it hurts to have someone break in to your sanctuary and take them.  Especially with someone at home.  I bet your housemate sleeps a little lighter from now on. 

    To ‘steal’ a line from Larkin, “Don’t let the bastards steal your happiness too.”

  8. Sherif Hedayat June 10, 2009 / 7:03 pm
    Sorry to hear that man.  At least I got to see you in that sexy Joe Rocket jacket before it got stolen! LOL  Now let’s go get em!  But seriously…..I’m sorry for the loss of your PS3 and the games.  I’d loan you mine…but I don’t play video games.  Damn…I guess I’m just no help huh? Up for some Calicovision? ;-)
  9. just me June 10, 2009 / 7:03 pm
    well that really sucks. and i agree with everyone that encourages you to fight back and to reclaim your home and space.
    we were broken into the week we moved from oakwood to dayton……probably should have left then…..my wedding ring was stolen along with all of the electronics etc….i really felt violated….but i got over it, and took ccw classes and prepared myself for the next situation……life goes on andd so do we. i am sorry this has happened to you. truly
  10. tg June 10, 2009 / 7:22 pm
    So sorry to hear this.  Unfortunately, with the bad economy, this is going to become more common place.  Word of warning – don’t replace everything right away, often they’ll come back.    It doesn’t just happen in Dayton – it’s all over.

    Really hope this was just random and had nothing to do with your running for Commission.  I know the problems you had when you ran against Dixon years ago.

  11. David Esrati June 10, 2009 / 8:06 pm

    Good news Sherif, they took the black Joe Rocket fleece liner- not the sexy yellow one.
    The only thing I’m replacing is the door jam- and turning the alarm on when home and asleep.
    As to getting a CCW- don’t need it, I won’t conceal anything- I’ll just blow their heads off if they come in when I’m home.
    As to the housemate…. anyone else want a free loading housemate- who sleeps through a door getting kicked in?
    Chocolate makes things better :-)
    thanks for everyone’s concern. Barbara- your daughter volunteered you for a home cooked dinner…. you may be in trouble :-)

  12. Karri June 10, 2009 / 9:10 pm
    Not to freak you further, but watch out in the next few weeks.  They tend to come back, especially if you had expensive tech stuff and if they heard no alarm.  Recommend HIGHLY put alarm stickers in windows if nothing else – maybe they will think you got a new alarm :)

    I got hit in Grafton Hill in a similar fashion a while back – roommate home, alarm not set.  Guy broke in twice in the same night – on my birthday no less.  Roommate saw the guy the second time, police matched prints on broken glass, and dirtbag is now serving long, long sentence – my house was part of a little crime spree the guy was on prior to being sentenced for an earlier string of misdeeds.

    Sorry it happened though.  Try not to feel too bad about it.

  13. frank coleman June 10, 2009 / 9:15 pm
    Sorry to hear this man.

    Some people are just @ssholes. You’ll bounce back!

  14. Bruce Kettelle June 10, 2009 / 10:41 pm
    They hit my apartment in Boston in ’80 and two months after moving to a DC suburb in ’85  they got the rest.  Bastards followed me down the east coast and now they are here in Dayton?

    Sorry Dave, I know this sucks.

  15. Trina Bledsoe June 11, 2009 / 1:42 pm
    Sorry to hear about the break-in. It has to be a feeling of total violation! Unfortunately, it is happening all over, not just the city. I live in Oakwood and over the last 6 months, we have had MANY break-ins on my street alone! Most of the break-ins were also in the daytime. One in particular that has me scared was a few houses down , during the day, homeowners home, husband working in the yard, wife inside. The two men went in through the side door, pulled a gun on the wife and robbed them! My neighbor also got broken into during the day. I now lock my doors and have decided to use AC instead of windows. I just do not feel safe….Good luck, hopefully with the decrease in Police and the increase in poverty it doesn’t get worse!
  16. David Esrati June 11, 2009 / 3:49 pm

    Trina, as my alarm guy said- when times get bad, his business gets better.
    The key is good neighbors and keeping an eye out for each other (and also, not having a slug for a housemate, who sleeps through a robbery).
    This is why it’s important for the community that we all have jobs- of some sort.
    Thanks for reminding people, it’s not just a Dayton thing.

  17. Melissa June 11, 2009 / 8:18 pm
    In defense of the sleeping housemate … unless they were tap dancing on his head, it’s fairly easy to sleep through a certain amount of sleep, especially if he was in his room with the door closed.

    I’m really sorry, David … what has to be most infuriating is the knowledge that burglary around here is a “regular” crime and prolly not high on the PD priority list. Have any of your neighbors been hit lately?

  18. Melissa June 11, 2009 / 8:18 pm
    Through a certain amount of noise. Duh …
  19. Larry Sizer June 14, 2009 / 7:23 am
    David: How many times do you have to hear me tell you and South Park to get CCTV, then you at least will know whom or who busted in your house. As tech savy as you are, I am a little surprised you do not have a monitor in your office watching your house, as close as your home/office is you could do wireless. The way the economy is, this is going to become much more the norm. Thus David: Do you need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows?
  20. David Esrati June 14, 2009 / 9:10 am

    Larry- I have an alarm and Eric was home. If the alarm goes off- I’m there faster than a speeding bullet.
    But- I think I’m going to rig an old computer with some webcams up- criminals beware.

  21. Teri Lussier June 14, 2009 / 10:18 am
    First, very sorry to hear about this, David. Glad no one was hurt, however, I love that you’ve shared this openly. Your ability to communicate your experiences and your ideas in a forum where others can discuss this as well, is helpful.

    This:
    >I’m not supposed to share this with you according to our neighborhood president. But, that’s not me.

    …is interesting. Your neighborhood president would do well to take a proactive stand about sharing this information. Most people are only looking for the truth. Most people understand that crime happens everywhere to some extent, and are better able to deal with it, if they know going in what they are dealing with- in other words, it’s often the fear of the unknown that keeps people from living in some areas. To hear something like “It’s dangerous is Dayton” means nothing, but feeds on our fear of the unknown. The opposite reaction- don’t discuss the crime rate- has the same effect.

    How much crime? What type of crime? Where is this crime concentrated? All important things to know, and will become imperative to discuss openly as Dayton works to find its footing for the future. Once this information is made public, communities can begin to work proactively to eat this elephant in the room, the only way to eat an elephant- one bite at a time.

  22. David Lauri June 14, 2009 / 3:07 pm
    Be sure to rig the old computer with webcams to copy the photos to a remote directory in case the old computer itself ever gets stolen.

    As for CCTV, Britain’s gone that route with cameras practically everywhere, and some people think they’ve gone way over the line.  For one of the latest examples, see:
    http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/05/britains-cctv-network-to-track-log-all-car-journeys/
    Of course, if one isn’t doing anything wrong, one has nothing to fear, does one?

  23. Larkin June 14, 2009 / 3:57 pm
    David Lauri, I guess it would depend on what the “anything wrong” is. In England, it’s illegal to put a stamp upside down as a letter. (I don’t think they enforce this, though.) I would really worry about the application of this technology in prosecuting “crimes against the state,” even if it’s really useful for prosecuting crimes against individuals.  (I think it’s a good idea for David E. to use one — after all, he’s not the government. At least not yet.)  
  24. David Esrati June 14, 2009 / 4:25 pm

    David Lauri- of course it would go to a remote server.
    And- Teri-
    as to the neighborhood president- she’s all about sharing internally, she just is terrified about it outside our little ‘hood.
    Crime stats says South Park is pretty safe. We have a rash of break ins every time a certain person gets released from prison or jail- but, that’s about it.

  25. Larry Sizer June 14, 2009 / 8:45 pm
    I’m not supposed to share this with you according to our neighborhood president. But, that’s not me. Thanks for standing up David, you got my vote, Dayton’s future Commissioner.
    You know as well as I, the the neighborhood president is not about $outh Park, she is about money. At our monthly meeting she now shuffles the community base police into the hallway so the people at the meeting don’t hear or be able to interact with the conversation. Why doesn’t the neighborhood president have some transparency on her dealings with 529 Hickory Street. She scares me from her lack of sensitivity to your situation, I would think as president, she would welcome people knowing of this home invasion so they may act accordingly. 
  26. tg June 14, 2009 / 11:50 pm
    There’s nothing sinister about the neighborhood president’s actions – she just doesn’t like to share dirty laundry outside of the neighborhood.  She’s very sensitive to the fact that anyone out of town searching for homes can google and find blogs like David’s and others. 

    David summed it up – we have one guy in the neighborhood and you can trace any break ins to his recent release from prison – and the break ins stop when he goes back in the next time.  The problem isn’t our neighborhood president’s desire to not to blog about it, the problem is the Prosecutor’s office won’t put away repeat offenders because he doesn’t want to jeopardize his batting average.

  27. Teri Lussier June 15, 2009 / 8:47 am
    tg-

    >There’s nothing sinister about the neighborhood president’s actions – she just doesn’t like to share dirty laundry outside of the neighborhood.  She’s very sensitive to the fact that anyone out of town searching for homes can google and find blogs like David’s and others.

    Doesn’t matter what she likes. Information can no longer be hidden away and controlled and the very fact that people are describing their most profound experiences about life in Dayton- the good the bad and the ugly- is a fantastic opportunity to discuss the proactive steps being taken in all directions. Trying to prevent information from being shared does more damage than sharing it. Again, this attitude feeds the fear of the unknown.

    Information cannot be hoarded and information is driving the world. Everything we do as humans, at this particular point in time, is based on serving information’s insatiable need to be shared. Better to embrace this, and particularly during such a crucial time in Dayton’s history, openly sharing vast amounts of information about Dayton- pushing incredible amounts of information and ideas about Dayton out in the world, this could make Dayton a leader among similar cities.

  28. tg June 15, 2009 / 10:23 am
    Teri – first of all, only David & the neighborhood president know exactly what was said between them and in what context, so the rest of us are just speculating.  She devotes so much of her life to the neighborhood without compensation – but often her payback is a lot of snide comments by conspiracy theorists in a public forum.   And no, I’m not suggesting you are one of them.

    As you said “Information can no longer be hidden away and controlled …. Trying to prevent information from being shared does more damage than sharing it. Again, this attitude feeds the fear of the unknown.”

    Coming from a Realtor this is more profound, especially when you consider how much you are not allowed to say professionally without losing your license.   So often it comes down to a simple “trust me, you wouldn’t want to live in this neighborhood.”    I am not a realtor so I very freely answer any questions a potential tenant or buyer may have – but it’s after they’ve seen the house, seen the neighborhood and have had a chance to experience it first hand.

    Then I can describe to them the difference between a sex offender and predator; or that the crime is minor and often because someone left something of value in plain sight in their car or left their garage door open.    Some things are best discussed face to face and not as a simple blog post.

    Just like individuals don’t air all their dirty laundry on a first date, not everyone is comfortable putting things out on a blog where they can be taken out of context.    I’m just asking that we not treat the neighborhood president’s behavior as sinister or conspiratorial or overly controlling – because it’s not the case.  Quite honestly, it was David’s way of getting in a dig at her, because they don’t always see eye to eye on things.  Right David???  ;)

  29. Teri Lussier June 15, 2009 / 10:57 am
    tg-

    >first of all, only David & the neighborhood president know exactly what was said between them and in what context, so the rest of us are just speculating.

    Was this taken out of context? Is David is not giving us all the facts? And I have no idea who the neighborhood pres is, but I’ve done enough volunteering to appreciate the amount of work that goes into that position. This isn’t personal, it’s about an attitude that I find unproductive. It’s everywhere in Dayton, South Park Neighborhood Assoc, is one tiny example.  We can’t spin Dayton any longer, so let’s become proactive. Let’s do a SWOT assessment and openly discuss our clean laundry, as well as the dirty laundry. The folks that are going to respond to honest information sharing are Creatives, forward thinking sponges for exactly the type of open dialog that I’m talking about.

    And as a Realtor, I do rely on information from a variety of sources to determine what is going on in neighborhoods so when my clients say they want to live in the city of Dayton, in a historic home, and share other criteria, I can point them to a wide array of information- some from the MLS, but also websites, demographic sources, etc, so that this:

    > “trust me, you wouldn’t want to live in this neighborhood.”  

    never comes out of my mouth! That’s called steering. We can, and should, lose our licenses for that as well, and that is exactly the type of bullshit that I’m working to combat. I can give independent sources of information, and I can give contact information so anyone who wants to know what it’s like to live in a neighborhood can hear it from the folks that are walking the walk. But. If I put a client in touch with a contact who is not going to give all the facts, then everyone suffers- the client, the neighborhood, my credibility. Like I said, people just want all the information and from there, they can make decisions on what neighborhood(s) might be a great fit.

    As far as David not seeing eye to eye with someone, well that’s hardly news, is it?  In fact, that’s part of his *ahem* charm.  :-)

  30. David Esrati June 15, 2009 / 11:15 am

    TG- This isn’t me vs the prez, if it was, I would have named her-
    it’s about the idea of hiding dirty laundry- just as Teri said.
    I don’t believe hiding anything helps. We’ll never be able to compensate if we don’t know what we’re trying to overcome.
    That was her first reaction- it gave me pause, but after thinking about it- I stuck with my original plan- which was to write about it.

  31. tg June 15, 2009 / 11:34 am
    And I think this is one of those times when a face to face conversation would work best – because I think we all agree, but it’s not coming out that way.

    Teri – I know you’re one of the good guys and I’d like to join forces with you to overcome the fear of Dayton that many realtors do have.  We all know steering and it’s illegal, but we all have stories of it occurring.  Our CE course for realtors last year was very successful and I’d like to do it again through the DABR – this one was state but not locally “sanctioned”.   I don’t believe it to be anything sinister on anyone’s part.  I think we all live in our own self contained bubbles (some say silos, but I like bubbles more).  We know what we know and we don’t know what we don’t know.  I could elaborate, but that pulls off of topic on this thread.

    David, I don’t take any issue with your discussing the break in.   I’m a bit protective of our President because there aren’t many willing to step into the role that have the contacts she has.  I was starting to sense some piling on happening here and, being the overprotective one that I am, just wanted to squelch that a bit.  

    Dayton has enough legitimate barriers to overcome, but we spend so much of our time fighting the perceptions that we rarely get to tackle reality.   Unfortunately people in this town have very long memories.  A crime may have occurred 20 years ago and an area may be totally different today, but people won’t let it go and keep talking about it as if it’s a current event.

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