In case you didn’t already know, we live in Tampa (Florida for you out of country folks). Our area is booming and anything we could ever want to eat or shop for is located within a two mile radius. This has its advantages, like not having to drive an hour to the nearest Target when mine is less than a mile away. It also has its disadvantages, like not being able to get to the mile-away Target in under fifteen minutes because EVERYBODY AND THEIR FRIGGIN GRANDMA ARE DRIVING TEN MILES UNDER THE SPEED LIMIT AND THE TRAFFIC LIGHTS ONLY LET TWO CARS THROUGH. Sorry for yelling, I’ll calm down now, I promise.

Our area also has an overabundance of banks. I don’t know if this is the case everywhere but there is literally a bank in every single shopping plaza and in some plazas, there are more than one. I often wonder how these banks all play nice together and stay in business with the economy in the shitter like it is. Which leads me to the next topic. With the economy in the shitter, we’ve had a rash of bank robberies in the area. Not just in Tampa but in surrounding cities as well. It seems like every week another bank is being hit up by some dumbass with a ski mask and a water gun in their pocket.

A couple of weeks ago, I was home alone with Elliot. Graham was at school and I was getting ready to go pick him up. The phone rang and the caller ID said it was from an unidentified number. I usually don’t answer those calls since it’s usually some telemarketer calling to piss me off. I decided to answer this time and got a reverse 911 recording when I did. The caller (thanks Hillsborough County Sheriff dude) informed me that the bank LESS THAN A MILE AWAY had been robbed and the suspect was on the loose. It gave a physical description of him and said to consider the man armed and dangerous. While I was listening to the recording, my dog Chloe started growling and barking at an unknown assailant. That’s when I did this:

I figured it had to be the bank robber trying to get into the house. I bravely (for Elliot’s sake) ran and closed the garage door and then tiptoed down the hallway to see what Chloe was barking at. A fucking squirrel. There was a squirrel in the driveway snacking on some acorns and Chloe was freaking out over it. That damn dog has an uncanny ability to freak me out (like the time Jamie was out of town and she started growling at the wall for no reason, convincing me there was a ghost in the house). I regained my composure and Elliot and I went to pick up Graham from school.

The rest of the day, I was on edge. There were cop cars in the area and even a ghetto bird (police helicopter) flying overhead. Later that night I learned that the robber had fled on foot, ran into a nearby chiropractor’s office and demanded a patient’s car keys. The doctor confronted him and the robber stabbed the doctor in the neck and back (he was ok). Then he left in the patient’s car and the police helicopter was able to follow him to his house TWO BLOCKS AWAY and arrest him. This crazy nutjob bank robber dude lives two blocks away from me. In a nice neighborhood on a lakefront street. Earlier this week when Graham and I went on our power walk, I walked down this street. I was trying to guess which house was the robber’s and what his family life was like. Was he a regular guy that had such bad financial woes that he finally snapped? Was he the wayward son of a nice upstanding family who was out for a good time? It shook me up to know that I live so close to someone who could commit a violent act like that. I guess you really can’t trust your neighbors.

The full story from that day is here.



  1. Elisa

    That is crazy!

    I’ve never seen all of scream. I watched a little bit and got scared. LOL

    Elisas last blog post..Early Morning, Still Dark

  2. ashley

    He was probably some poor schmuck who worked in the financial world who just lost his job and was trying to prevent his totally underwater house from going into foreclosure. Sometimes the truth is scarier than fiction.

    ashleys last blog post..I’m Easily Amused

  3. DeeMarie

    You totally just gave me the heebie-jeebies. I’m glad you were all safe!!! Maybe you should start taking a self-defense class… it’ll help you with HASAY too!! 🙂

    DeeMaries last blog post..Club HASAY Update

  4. Sprite's Keeper

    Damn, Casey! You get all the good crime! We just get grow houses down here. All the cops have to do is open their windows as they cruise down the street to target them.

    Sprite’s Keepers last blog post..Hair Apparent

  5. carrie

    Dang, that is freaky!!!! I am with you on the first part, Avian Whackos is what I call all the snowbirds that have clogged my roads and such.
    I am worry about our economy and the full fall out of all the folks loosing their money…

  6. Laufa

    I know quite a few peeps in my neighborhood that could snap anyday. But it makes for a good Halloween. Have fun trick-or-treating (hopefully you don’t get any tricks).

    Laufas last blog post..Jump-oline

  7. Michele

    I too have lived in land of slow moving Buicks, banks everywhere and (gasp) golf courses, it’s called Mesa, AZ. Scary place that.

    As their investments go down I’m a little afraid one of them might snap. I can just see an elderly bank robber. Blue tinted gray hair, knitting needle in hand, telling the bank teller all about their latest trip to the endocrinologist as they hold them up. SCARY!

    Micheles last blog post..Harper’s Weekly Magazine 1864

  8. Kelly

    Ok i’m new the the states and this kind of thing freaks me out big time.

    I bought a dog so I wowuld feel a little more protected, but she jumps at her own shadow….Oh well…. 🙂

    Kellys last blog post..Moving again

  9. Toni

    Oh my goodness!!! I would have died! Every time I hear a helicopter at night (we don’t have many here) I just know they are after some on the run felon and he close! That call would have made me scream as well!

    Maddie (the dog) does that crap sometimes and usually our back door is not locked so it will freak me out until I go lock it…

    Tonis last blog post..Gal To Gal

  10. Krystal

    See you get the white color criminals most likely – I get the ones with the real guns and anger issues. I cannot count how many times I have heard stories of stabbings, shootings, drugs, domestic violence within a mile radius of my house. I so totally need to move outta here. Canada is really starting to look good!! London is too expensive!

    Krystals last blog post..Dear Toyota Tacoma Driver

  11. Heather

    Well, I don’t think it matters where you live. Nice neighborhood or not so nice…there are “crazies” everywhere!

    Heathers last blog post..Babies, dragons, and poop dooty!

  12. feener

    mother fucking scary

    feeners last blog post..Organization

  13. Cape Cod Gal

    We live in a very quiet, dark neighborhood. Our house has tons of windows that look out on to our very dark yard. If I’m alone in the house and the dogs start growling and yapping it freaks me out!!! I’m tiptoing around, one time I actually grabbed a knife from the block in the kitchen. It’s always a fucking squirrel, skunk or God forbid a leaf blew aross the driveway. We were sleeping one night and a dish fell off a pile of dishes on the drying rack and broke. My husband and I were blasted awake thinking someone had broken a window and was trying to get in the house. The dogs were passed out cold….snoring. Thank God we keep them around because they’re cute and not for protection! Geez!!

    Cape Cod Gals last blog post..My junk, my junk…my lovely lady junk.

  14. steenky bee

    Ghetto bird? I’ve never heard of such a thing. Also? Who still robs banks? It’s not the seventies. Don’t get me wrong, that stuff happens here too, and I’m always stunned. You were almost touched by danger! Too scary. Keep working out so you can go all Chuck Norris on the next robber! Go girl!

    steenky bees last blog post..Spin Cycle: More Than Meets The Eye

  15. Jim

    I came over from Blissfully Caffeinated.

    On the bright side, if he hadn’t have lived in the area, he just might have shown up regardless of the attack squirrel.

    Jims last blog post..A Halloween Gift

  16. Brenda-SeriouslyMama

    Ghetto Bird is my new favorite word(s). It’s scary to think about what goes on behind closed doors and as much as my dogs are big lumps of nothingness, I am so glad they go nuts when they see something that isn’t right in their world. With Russ gone so much, I like having those extra set of ears around even if they fart and snore ALL THE TIME. The dogs, not thier ears.

    Stay away from Panera this weekend and I’ll banish nachos and beer. The new Weight Watchers quote for the week and weak… “If hunger isn’t the problem, than eating won’t fix it.” Poetic, isn’t it? 🙂

    Brenda-SeriouslyMamas last blog post..Flashback Friday

  17. Leah

    Ohhhhhh no!! That poor chiro, he’s going to need to see a ‘real’ dr now. Hey, I moved from Ft. Myers a couple years ago, havnt had the desire to venture back yet tor a visit. I’m just thrilled that ghetto bird didnt seal your hubcaps… (they are known to make their nest’s in them) and that your all safe!! Leah

    Leahs last blog post..Flashback Friday (4/07)

  18. Miss Jack

    WTF! I’m coming over right now and picking you and the kids up! You’re coming to live with us! Your husband, can fend for himself! My god Casey! That freaks me out. No wonder you’re on high alert at your house. Hay, better yet. How about I just send my grandmother to your house. She is notorious for making sure every window, every door and any other nook and cranny that has a lock on it is locked. Twice over! She can be kind of annoying about it, but after a story like that one, she can continue to lock as many doors as she likes! Stay safe!

    Miss Jacks last blog post..Photo Tag

  19. debateur

    Wow that’s scary. I can’t handle being alone these days at night.

    debateurs last blog post..Biased or neutral ?

  20. jenni

    being that I’m the queen of parinoia I would have reacted exactly the same. in fact, I am reacting exactly the same way and tampa is like a thousand miles from here.

    jennis last blog post..Well on His Way

  21. jen

    i don’t trust my dog for anything.
    she barks in her sleep. and doesn’t make a sound during the waking hours. even if someone is banging on my door.

    jens last blog post..oops.

  22. HeatherPride

    ACK! Creepy! I am curious about the guy too! I happen to live in the meth capital of America (or so the papers say) and stories like these are sort of common around here. It’s usually a family where a teenage kid or adult kid still living at home gets hooked on meth and does some crap that is whack. (I thought you would appreciate that sentiment after busting out your ghetto bird terminology)

    HeatherPrides last blog post..Friday Quickie

  23. goodfather

    Ugh. No fun. I’m glad it was just a squirrel.

    Happy Friday!

    goodfathers last blog post..Spin Cycle: Trick

  24. Cellobella

    I wonder how much energy you would burn off chasing squirrels…

    How is your exercise going?

    I’m finding it hard to give up the wine after work…

    About half way through the first glass I think – hang on – I’m not supposed to be doing this at the moment – and by then it’s too late so I pour another…


    Cellobellas last blog post..A group half as small as me

  25. mrsbear

    That is some scary shiz, sister. Wow. I would’ve been a mess too. A few months back a lady got punched and robbed on our block, the getaway car was parked in our swale area. My nephew saw it happen and called me as he got their plate numbers, I freaked the hell out, locked all the doors and closed all the shades. I was even scared to let the dogs out that night, since the hubs was at work…as usual, when shiz goes down, I’m on my own. 🙁

    mrsbears last blog post..My Biggest Baby

  26. Michele

    I’m here for you one sweet potato fry at a time.

    If the old people don’t go to Florida to die they head to Arizona to dry out then die. In the mean time they run into perfectly good drivers. Not that there are that many good drivers here. Turn signals are an optional feature on the vehicles sold here.

    Micheles last blog post..Sweet Potato Oven Fries

  27. Katie

    Stupid dogs! If the bankrobber had actually been breaking in, Chloe would have been taking a nice peaceful uninterrupted nap on the couch – just like my loveable little moron.

    Katies last blog post..Tweestie Schmeetsie

  28. cyndi

    Oh, so glad to hear you’re safe from all but the stinky squirrels. We were caught up in the Washington Sniper a few years back and it was terrifying to hear the swat team circling overhead whenever they spotted a white van! Stay safe 🙂 Great job with the HASAY, btw!

    cyndis last blog post..Monster Mash

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