Tonight started out like every Friday night. We went over to our friends' house for dinner and then we went to church to hear the Kenya Missions Team share about their trip (and eat ice cream!). It was a pleasant evening and it was great to hear about what God is doing in Kenya. I got the boys home and in bed by 9:00 and quickly headed out to get my mail.
This is something I do almost every evening. I tuck the kids in, go out quickly-locking the door behind me-and run out to the mailbox. It takes about three minutes total and is much quicker to do without the dawdling three year old who marches to the rhythm of his own drummer.
I was near the fountain in the front of the complex thinking about the kids who were swimming unsupervised in the pool. I was wondering where their parents were and was hoping that nothing would happen to them because it's useless to tell them that they shouldn't be in the pool that late at night without an adult. At that moment I saw a young woman come running out of an apartment. I thought to myself, "Oh dear, there must be some party going on! I'm so glad I live towards the back!"
Then the woman approached me asking me if I had a phone. My phone had died earlier today and it was at home charging so I said, "No, I'm sorry, I don't have a phone on me." Then I noticed that the woman was crying and looked scared to death. She said to me, "Please, you have to have a phone! They are after me! I'm so scared I think he's going to kill me!"
So, I quickly looked around, saw no one coming at the moment and said, "Come with me, I have a phone in my apartment. You'll be safe there." And then I hurried her as fast as I could back to my apartment, hoping that whoever was after her wasn't going to then be after me.
I got her upstairs and immediately called the police. After getting off of the phone with the police I asked her some questions and tried to calm her down. Turns out that her and her boyfriend were fighting and he turned on her and started choking her. She had marks on her neck, bruises on her arm and her shirt was torn.
I talked with her and asked her lots of questions, trying to get her to calm down a bit until the police arrived (at this point both boys were asleep, thank goodness!).
When the police arrived they were such butts. I really can't think of a non-curse word to describe these officers so I have to stick with "butts". There was one really tall one who was asking all of the questions and he wouldn't sit down with her. He just kept asking her the same questions and wasn't even really listening. He asked her her date of birth and then asked her how old she was (hello! Math much?). When she said that her boyfriend was choking her and that she was screaming he said, "Well, he mustn't have been choking you that hard if you could scream." What the hell!?
So, the officers left to go find the guy and then came back because she gave them the wrong apartment number so she had to go and show them which one. They said that I had to give a statement too (which is fine, throw that guy's booty in jail!), but I don't know if they are coming back or not now. It's been about 40 minutes since they left.
How surreal is this? I'm so glad I was there to help this woman (Maria), but I wish that the cops were a little more compassionate.
I was all ready to blog tonight about how excited we are that Sam is coming home tomorrow and that Nathaniel is just like Sam when it comes to music, but this is much more thrilling to blog about.
I really hope everything turns out okay for this woman. I hope she gets up the guts to leave him and get a better life for her and her daughter. I'm glad that I was in the right place at the right time tonight.