Okay. Some of you folks may know my wife and I bought a gas station. Some might know that dealing with the drama of an inner city ghetto station in the middle of the murder capital of the nation (Baltimore) has been, well, dramatic.
Yesterday, it came to a surprising head.
One of my cashiers (let's call her Tamika though that isn't even close to her real name) is a semipro athlete on a travel team and has this boyfriend problem. He's thuggish, possessive, and just plain odd. Think drug dealing stalker type. He doesn't like that she goes out of town a lot and tends to hover around work all the time. I've told her I didn't want him around the station while she's working and she mostly listens to me, but made the valid point that she can't really control what he does.
About a month ago, we had some problems in the neighborhood with someone holding up other gas stations, so I held a clinic in the store about how to be mindful of your surroundings, not opening the door at night, making sure to walk one another to the parking lot, and how to properly execute some basic self defense techniques as a last resort.
So, yesterday, she called in saying that she'd be a couple hours late. She had some things she needed to take care of and that another one of the cashiers said she'd cover it. I wasn't happy because I don't like unauthorized changes in routines and told her that we'd need to discuss this when she got in.
When she got in, she had a shiner, a fat lip, and scratches on her neck. I knew instantly what had happened. And any desire I had to chew her out just dissipated. I asked her if she was okay and she said she was.
Apparently, what happened was that she was over at his house when he demanded to look through her cell phone log. She refused and he hauled off and hit her. She attempted to protect herself, but he threw her on the bed and attempted to wrestle the phone from her. She responded by taking his back and executing a perfect rear naked choke. Six seconds later, he was unconscious on the floor. I did mention she's an athlete, right?
She freaked out, of course, and got her things and got ready to go. He came to at that point and threatened to call the cops on her. She invited him to do that and ran out the door and out to the street. There she waited for the cops to arrive.
When they did, they asked her if she had called 911. She answered truthfully that she hadn't and the policewoman put her in cuffs. When the cop noticed that she had been beaten pretty badly, he demeanor changed and her partner ended up dragging the thug out of his apartment. After a 20 minute conversation about how the events went down, they took the cuffs off her, called her mom (a Pentacostal preacher) and waited for her mom to show up (I suppose figuring that that would be worse than a night on ice).
Anyway, now the thug has a restraining order on him and a 2nd degree assault charge. The cops ratfcuked the apartment and found minor drug possession evidence, and an unlicensed weapon. In any other city, I might find this all encouraging, but this is Baltimore.