Downtown/Sun Feb 14/3:36 pm: Officer Rebecca Miller reports: "The suspect entered the Subway sandwich shop in the Denny Regrade and went up to the counter and contacted victim, who offered to take her order. Suspect stated that she needed to go out and ask her boyfriend if he wanted a sandwich. The suspect then walked out and instantly reentered the business. She then entered the employee-only area behind the counter, placed the victim into a headlock, and said that she had a gun. Suspect threatened to shoot the victim if she did not give her money. Suspect walked victim in the headlock hold to the cash register and had her other hand in the area of her coat pocket.
"The victim attempted to give the suspect her tip money. The suspect refused the tip money and demanded the money from the cash register. The victim gave the suspect an unknown amount of money from the cash register. The suspect then told victim to stay there for 10 minutes and left the business. The victim immediately went outside and began to follow her..."
Police proceed to explain that the suspect, who had nearly $400 worth of stolen bills in her pockets, ran down to the Greyhound bus terminal, entered a cab, and told its driver that she was in a hurry—she needed to get to the hospital; her sister was in labor! The driver reluctantly accepted the fare and departed. The suspect, however, failed to check and see if she was being watched or followed. The police received information about the cab from the victim, who was in pursuit, and officers eventually captured the suspect in the Central District.
I'll discuss only one of the many strange things in this police report: the tip jar. Why did the employee attempt to sacrifice her tips? We can understand why the robber rejected the tip money—it was too little—but it's harder to understand why the worker offered the tips in the first place. Is it this: Did the worker fear the loss of her job if she failed to protect her boss's money? Jobs are not easy to find these days, and one might do anything ("Please, take my tips and the leave the register alone") to hold on to the one thing that's keeping one's head just above water. Is that it?
Downtown/Sun Feb 14/3:36 am: Officer Garza reports: "Suspect had parked inside the parking garage and was attempting to leave. There are signs clearly posted that there is a $5.00 fee for parking on the weekends. His vehicle stopped at the exit gate, and he was told that he needed to pay in order for the exit gate to be raised. The suspect became angry and yelled out that he did not have to pay last weekend when the gate was left open. The angry suspect attempted to leave the parking garage through the entry gate... he inched forward while revving the engine..."
Last week, the driver saw the most amazing thing: the paradise of a free parking garage. This week, he has to face the fact that even if it actually happened, even if he tasted and enjoyed the real fruits of that paradise, it ended up being only an illusion. The handcuffs were not an illusion.