I witnessed a crime yesterday

Actually, I witnessed 3 brave men chase down 
a burglar who was fleeing by bike

I think he had stolen something from the small corner grocery store

When they got him off his bike,
they held him on the street while they waited for the police to arrive

Curiously, it was the policewoman who calmly talked to the perpetrator,
not one of the three policemen
Perhaps policewomen are seen as non-threatening?
I hadn't thought about this important role before

The streets were filled with pedestrians when the whole thing happened
Sadly I saw many elderly people stand frozen, shocked, to see the event unfold
Clearly they were traumatized by what they saw
I hope they slept okay last night
I know I didn't

Petty crime feels more pervasive in England than in the US

As an expat said to me about her home country,
when third hand stories about crime start to become first hand stories with frequency,
you know there is a problem

In the US, I never knew anyone who came eye to eye with a criminal in the act

Here, I have a handful of friends who either witnessed a high street burglary
or were victims of home invasions

I know that America looks like the Wild West with our ownership of guns
but I do think a potential burglar thinking someone *might* have a gun at home
prevents many home invasions in America
(guns are illegal in England - police don't even carry them)

Early on I was given the advice that if someone is burglarizing my home in England,
do not intervene - just let them carry on and they won't hurt you

In America, you can use whatever means to protect your home and family

Yet here, the news reports crime victims being prosecuted for harming a perpetrator
- intentionally or not -
It makes one feel defenseless

Do I feel safer in the US or in England?
I feel less likely to witness or be a victim of a crime in the US,
but if I do, it would be more violent

So I guess my safety-o-meter feels about the same, just different
Either way, not that safe
 
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