I Hid The Truth From The Police And They Came After Me
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This is Lewis, and this is the story of how he helped the police catch some serial robbers.
So, it all started when Lewis’ folks took away his Xbox and grounded him for three weeks. He wasn't allowed to play video games or hang out with friends. They expected him to study non-stop, because he was failing almost everything at school. And, as if on purpose, they did it literally right before the new Assassin's Creed game was released. It was a bad situation, but nothing could have stopped him from getting his favorite thing in the world. So, naturally, Lewis turned to his best buddy, Stanley, for help. And as always he didn't disappoint. Not only did he have the game, but he was also sick, so his parents let him stay at home for a couple of days. Everything was aligning perfectly. Or so he thought...
So, that day he rode his bike over to Stanley's house. He was in a hurry, anticipating some high-grade gaming time, when all of a sudden he heard gunshots – real gunshots – and screaming. He saw several people running out of a pawn shop that was right in front of him. Luckily, there was a dumpster nearby where he could hide. From there he was able to see them better. They looked like typical robbers, with face masks, guns, and everything. They were trying to keep a hold of the money inside of their bags, but some of it fell on the ground anyway. They were obviously panicking. He barely even noticed the car they were getting into. He couldn't see it clearly from his hiding spot, so he took out his phone and tried to film them. The robbers had almost left when he was finally able to capture their car on his camera. It was just a 15-second video, but he hoped it would at least give a decent view of the car.
After that, he went straight to Stanley's house. He wasn't sure if the robbers noticed him or not, but he wasn't going to risk it. He told Stanley everything, and showed him the video. It was good enough to see the car plate number. They had completely forgotten about the game, and instead talked for hours about what to do, and still couldn't decide if they should tell somebody about it or not. Finally, they decided that there had probably been surveillance cameras around, and police could do without him or his recording. They also didn't want their parents to find out and go berserk about the whole thing.
Three weeks went by, and Lewis’ period of being grounded ended, but this was just the start of his suffering. The robbery seemed to be the only thing people were talking about. Wherever he went he heard something new about it and, every time, it made him feel like a complete jerk. It seemed that the police still didn't have any leads, and asked for witnesses to come forward with any information. The pawn shop's owner, Mr. Stevenson, had been shot, and his wife had had a heart attack. Both of them were still in the hospital. He also learned that this wasn't the first robbery that had happened, and the police had been after them for several months already.
After a long battle with his conscience, he finally decided that he needed to tell the police about the video and the car.
So, the plan was to send the video to the police from a library computer. That way they would know it was done by someone using a school account, but not who actually sent it. Then the problem would be solved, the robbers would end up in prison, and he would be the anonymous hero of the day.
Lewis went to the library and started googling which e-mail account he could use to send the video. But at that moment he felt the spooky presence of the school librarian, Mrs. Mullins, nearby.
When she asked him what he was researching, his mind went blank. He hadn’t come up with a proper lie beforehand, so he said the only thing he could think of – the pawn shop's robbery. That was a huge mistake, because she then bombarded him with questions. He was now panicking, and it probably showed because she asked him if he was alright.
“It's just so horrible what happened, y'know? The robbery! Poor Mr. Stevenson and his wife! Awful, it's just so awful. It makes me so scared that they haven't caught the robbers yet. Like, what if they robbed the school? Or the library? Have you thought about that possibility? Knowledge is power, right? And the robbers...what did they want?” He couldn't stop talking nonsense to save his life. He was just saying random stuff, hoping she would believe him and leave him alone. He was sure she wouldn’t, but she left him to do his “research” anyway.
So, he quickly wrote out the email, attached the video, and signed it “Anonymous.” Then he snuck out of the library to avoid another interrogation and went home...
Music by Epidemic Sound: https://www.epidemicsound.com