Well, it’s been a quiet week in Lake Wallingford, my home ‘hood. So quiet, in fact, that like all legitimate big city news organizations, Wallyhood is compelled to fill the reporting void space with tales of flashing blue lights and small crime.
I was working the night beat at the Wallyhood Crime Desk. Actually…I had just returned from the Mariners’ home opener, in which they had soundly thrashed the much-loathed Houston Astros 11-1. I had turned in for the night, when Boss Editor Megan sent a message: There’s something going on by the John Stanford International School (JSIS). This is my home turf, as they say, since I live across the street from the school. She had been trying to Lyft home from an evening out, but found the way blocked with SPD and other law enforcement vehicles. There was a helicopter overhead. This had to have developed in the brief time between my arrival back at my place, and when Megan had tried to pass through. I had heard one of those low-flying helicopters disturbing my cat’s daily 23-hour nap after I had settled in at home.
Like any good crime beat reporter, I threw a coat over my stylish bedtime sweat pants and sweat shirt and walked up to 42nd. There were still two SPD cars blocking the street at the JSIS parking lot. And, there was a black pickup truck still idling at the entrance to the teacher and staff parking lot for JSIS. It was right at the entrance, as in, mashed up at the now-dented iron gate around the perimeter to that area. As I watched, the cops backed the running truck off the fence. I mentioned to one of them that there was a bucket hat on the sidewalk several feet away on 42nd, but he said they weren’t concerned with that. Other cops were probing with flashlights around the outdoor play area of the school on the other side of the fence. I turned around to walk back home, but the cop told me not to cross in front of the idling pickup truck. So I walked behind it and back down to my place.
From my seasoned Wallingford crime beat experience, this appeared to be a Friday night hit-and-run. It did seem to engender a larger police presence than a normal traffic or DUI incident, so perhaps a pursuit of some sort was involved. According to my crime scene handbook, however, most hit-and-runs involve the perpetrator hitting something and then driving off—not hitting something and then literally running away. I couldn’t find out more details on the usual online sites that people use to increase their levels of paranoia about living in the city, but maybe more experienced folks can dig up information and post it in the comments. This is one of the reasons that “Wallyhood needs you”, as our banner on our site proclaims.
This morning, I went back up to the scene of the tiny crime. The fence is indeed dented. The hat was gone. Otherwise…it was a quiet Saturday in Lake Wallingford, my home ‘hood.