I called the police, would you have called the police?

studio1087

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I called the police, would you have called the police?

I got home from the office at 4 o’clock. There was a car in front of my house, an SUV. The engine was running the lights were on, and there was a short old man sitting still in the car with his head against the head rest. He wasn’t doing anything wrong he was just sitting there in front of my house. This is really unimportant but I bought a new microwave today at Best Buy because my microwave died. It took me about 45 minutes to move the new microwave in the house and haul the old microwave out to the dumpster and go back-and-forth. After 45 minutes the guy was still sitting still in the car with the engine running and the lights on. Then I brought some groceries in and the guy was still sitting in the car. Then I took some trash out from the kitchen and the guy was still sitting in the car. The dude was sitting there for an hour with the engine running and his lights on and he was absolutely still.

He was not a neighborhood guy. The elementary school school bus pulls up to my corner and I have 25 kids standing on my corner every morning. Many of their parents will drive them to the corner and I know their cars because they park around my corner to take the kids to the bus.

At the one hour mark I thought, I hope this guy isn’t sick, I hope he didn’t have a stroke, I don’t know what’s going on.

I called the police and I said this gentleman isn’t breaking the law but I’m a little worried he’s been sitting with his engine running and his lights on and he’s absolutely still and he’s been in front of my house for an hour. I actually called the cops and I’m not an uptight person by any means and I’m a live and let live guy but I’m looking at this guy and he’s just sitting there.

I call my mom every evening when I get home from work because she’s almost 90 and I care about her and I called her. I called my mom and describe the scenario. Three minutes later I get a call from a woman police officer in a cruiser and she said I’m at your corner and there’s no car there and I looked out the window in the car was gone in a couple minutes when I called my mother the guy Musta drove away.

Hit me hard, was a goofy for calling the cops? I didn’t feel comfortable approaching the car and wrapping on the guys window, I really didn’t know what to do, I just thought it was kind of freaky. Did I overreact? What would you have done if it was your house?
 

GGardner

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I'm not in your shoes, and it's easy for me to say from 900 miles away, but maybe just tapping on the window and asking if he's alright or lost? Perhaps he was a granddad from out of town who was tasked with picking up his grandchild from the bus stop and he got there really early (in the grand tradition of grand parents) or maybe he got the time wrong and missed it altogether.
 
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John Backlund

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Considering that the driver may have been experiencing some kind of medical emergency, or perhaps was a DUI passed out at the wheel, I don't think that a call to the police was out of line after an hour of him sitting there motionless in his vehicle with it running. It could have been carbon monoxide poisoning, who knows.

I guess I would also agree with the others who posted that they would have tapped his window for a response, it wouldn't need to be confrontational, just a "Are you ok?".
 
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studio1087

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re: the first two reply’s ...If you were sober and in good health....why would you sit there for an hour with your engine running and all the lights one. Please justify that. He colud have been very sick. I think it’s weird.

What if it was grandpa and something was wrong?

You will just ignore it because you’re so cool and woke?

c’mon.
 

JL_LI

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I’d call the police in my community. They generally respond professionally. There are other communities where I’d fear I’d be putting someone in danger. Was there a way to call the fire department? It saddens me that I’d second guess myself depending on location and that I wouldn’t have second guessed myself anywhere five years ago.
 

willietheweirdo

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I wouldn't think twice about it; sounds like it worked out just fine. That's what the cops are for, right?

Not easy to relate your gut instincts. But I'd like to think I would have gone up and given him the old "can I help you with something??" as soon as I saw him there.

It's also easier if you're big, shirtless + covered in tattoos, smoking a cigarette and white-knuckling an implement of gardening destruction...

They usually drive away before I even get a chance to knock on their window 🤥
 

GGardner

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re: the first two reply’s ...If you were sober and in good health....why would you sit there for an hour with your engine running and all the lights one. Please justify that. He colud have been very sick. I think it’s weird.

What if it was grandpa and something was wrong?

You will just ignore it because you’re so cool and woke?

c’mon.

I've never been accused of being cool or woke. I missed that he appeared to be unconscious. I thought he was just sitting outside your house in a running car for an hour and it was creeping you out. Didn't mean to offend you.
 

Mouth

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I would have talked to him to see if he was ok.

He could have been listening to something he didn't want to miss on the radio.

I have a guy that drives around the block 10-15 times a day. I'm tempted to follow him one day, but if he only goes home after 15 laps, I'll feel pretty silly following him in a circle 15 times. I noticed about 6 months ago when I took some time off and was around the house all day. I'm wondering if he racks up miles for taxes/"work", or if he's pretending he has a job, or just has a bad home life.
 

Happy Enchilada

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I would have done exactly what you did. If he needed medical attention, better to have professionals respond and have him get good help and you don't get sued by his heirs for not saving grandpa.

And what if he was freaking out and armed? Knock on his window and he might think you're one of the goblins from his subconscious and put a round through you. No thanks. Not to mention, the moment you knock, you become responsible for grandpa.

You did good. The fact that he drove away means he either was OK or had enough time to get OK. Either way, he's OK.
 




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