scared of the shadows

Something weird went down on my street last night. It happened all of a sudden, completely out of the blue, disturbing the otherwise quiet night-time surroundings. Dogs. And shouting. And running in the rain.

A slew of police cars camped out on my street, lights blaring, meeting the soft yellow ambient street light with harsh blue and red. I was lying in bed reading, and assumed it was a bunch of guys goofing around on the slippery street. I was wrong.

Before I knew it there was a crowd of officers and police dogs in behind the homes of my neighbours, and even behind mine for a little while (want to freak out, late at night? this will do it, just a little bit). You could tell when they'd get close to what they were looking for (thankfully not behind my house) because the dogs would bark, a low, steady cadence, yet urgent.

They brought him out from behind the house across the street - laid over the hood of the patrol car, surrounded by officers trying to ascertain god-knows-what. More cars arrive, more cars leave. I think I counted 8 at one point, though it was difficult to be accurate from my vantage point.

Once he was in the custody of a few officers, another few break off and head into my backyard. I can hear them remarking on the slippery-ness of our laneway. Hmm. I wonder if they might have cleared it for me?

Another ten or fifteen minutes and it's all over. Everyone piles into their cars, the offender (for what, I don't know) plunked ceremoniously into the back of a patrol car, safely tucked away behind bars, at least for the night, I assume.

An undercover suburban returns a few moments later, the cab illuminated, two patrol officers taking notes, one shining a flashlight from his window to catch house numbers.

Though part of me wants to know what was going on (guess who's leaving the back door light on from now on?), another part of me thinks it's probably better to not know, lest it scare the crap out of me.