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  • I'm a bit rubbish at gardening so my uncle and aunt, are kind enough to come and keep mine tidy for me. Today they came and uncle Bob noticed that my back door handle was broken and asked if I'd known it was like that. I didn't.

    We took a look and it was very loose, like someone had tried to prize the handle and lock out of the door but not quite managed it. I rent, so I called the housing association to see if they could replace the broken handle and lock but they wanted a crime reference so I called the police to report, knowing that there wasn't much they could do, and not really knowing whether this was in fact an attempted break in.

    Two women police constables came and were fairly certain it was a bungled burglary but fortunately my door locks held out. One took details while the other went door to door to see if any of my neighbours had seen anything. We've had a lot of wind and rain lately and it's prime burglary time, where people don't hear the break in efforts, coupled with the fact that the local authority have begun some mad scheme of revolving blackouts with the street lights at night to save money so some nights my road is very dark when it's our turn to do without lighting.

    I now have my crime reference but I have to wait for SOCO (Scene of Crime Officers) to come in the morning and fingerprint before anyone can touch the door handle, even though I explained we were touching it all afternoon and as I hadn't been out the back for a week I don't know when this might have happened. The police woman knew they won't likely find anything but they said they'd try anyway. She hung a latex glove over the handle in case that would help SOCO but said she'd probably call me next week to say that they were closing the case. She phoned the police station and told them it was a real crime. I said I'd ring the local authority tomorrow and suggest that these street light blackouts might not be such a good idea. She said they were advising people to complain about it initially but they got told to stop. She took notes in a very fat notebook, I guess there's been a lot of crime this month.

    I've seen some not very good images of police action on the news and internet lately, but I can see their frustration when they are told to do something and must do it, yet are still expected to solve crimes and keep people safe, without having a voice of their own, or enough power and resources to prevent bad things happening. And sometimes being asked to do things they don't like or want to do. I felt sorry for them, they were nice women, my age, and pleasant and cheery. It must be a tough job sometimes. I wondered how many people have had crimes happen to them today and felt like I'd won because my locks had held out against the crime onslaught. I think the police women were glad this was something easy to deal with too. The street lights are on tonight and there is no storm. Hopefully I'll get the lock and handle replaced when SOCO have been tomorrow.

    We have a police serial drama on TV in the UK called The Bill. My evening has been like a very boring episode of The Bill. I'm glad about that. Some things you don't need to be too exciting.
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