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If you see something wrong, when should you keep your nose out and when should you say something? *abuse*

(28 Posts)
emmabemmasmom Fri 19-Jun-09 09:16:07

There is someone who lives 2 doors down from me. She is a single mom with a little boy. I have seen 2 men come in and out for ages. Assume one is the boys father and one is who knows. Anyway, the police have been to hers many times and I have seen the unknown man getting carted off before. I don't know why and it is none of my concern so I stay out of it. He has had smashed windows on his car so maybe it was that...whatever.

Anyyway, I just saw the girl in her car with her little boy. The man (the unknown man) was holding the back of the car as she backed out slowly. He then ran up and ripped her door open and yelled at her. He unlocked the doors and before she could close her side he ran around and jumped in the car as it was moving slowly. She was obviously afraid and trying to get away from him. He got in and he hit her...yelled as she jumped a lot and then hit her again...yelled some more as he banged on the dashboard and she then drove off slowly with him in the car. I watched from my DD's bedroom window but they could not see me. I am really concerned by what I have seen. Until now it was none of my concern but I don't think I can stand by and watch a women get hit. Should I call the police and report it? They would know who I am talking about at they are at her address enough. Her boy was in the car too...what do I do? Leave it, or call and report his ass?

Also, I do not know either of their names or anything about them other than what I stated.

mistlethrush Fri 19-Jun-09 09:19:20

Can you ring the non-emergency phone number to your local station and see if you can talk to an officer that deals with domestic violence situations? You won't feel settled until you've talked to someone like that, and if he is effectively car-jacking her, someone should know.

glaskham Fri 19-Jun-09 09:20:39

I'd phone... they aren't going to know it was you, and if someone stands up for her maybe she'll stand up for herself??

tattycoram Fri 19-Jun-09 09:21:09

I would ring the police.

Jumente Fri 19-Jun-09 09:30:07

Ditto, ring the police station - not 999 as there's no point but definitely the station number, or go in and make a statement.

This sounds very serious and damaging for the child to witness sad

Please let us know how you get on.

maria1665 Fri 19-Jun-09 09:34:21

I think you should report it - this is abuse of the mum and the child, who had to watch his mum being hit.

She and her son sound vulnerable - are social services already involved?

She will probably not support a prosecution, and he will deny it and then there is only your evidence of what you saw, from a distance and an upstairs window. So there is a reasonable chance that no prosecution will follow.

But the matter will be referred to social services by the police (or at least that is what will happen in our area.) And if this is a child at risk, then it is another piece in the puzzle of how he can best be protected.

I am in no position to lecture you. I've been in this situation twice myself - the second time I reported it, but the first time I didn't. I wish I had though, even though the time I did report it, I went through agonies after I had made the call, wondering whether I had done the right thing.

The NSPCC phone line gave me fantastic guidance on what to do, and also gave me a chance to say out loud my fears, instead of just keeping them inside my head.

There is research on the effects of children, particularly boys, witnessing domestic violence on their mum. It can dramatically affect their self esteem, leading to anger issues in adult life. It would be a good thing that you do if you do report it. But it is not an easy decision.

Good luck.

emmabemmasmom Fri 19-Jun-09 09:35:14

Thank you so much. All I needed was one person to agree that I needed to call.

I just called and said what happened. Unfortunatly as I don't know any details it was a little hard. I did say if you look in the records for that address you would prob get all the info you need but they said they were only concerned with what happened today.

I told them what i saw and they said they would send someone out to see what's going on.

I know I did the right thing, I can only hope that it makes a difference. I was nearly in tears telling her what I saw. How aweful. If it were me I could only pray that someone would see it and say something...

Ill update once I know more or speak to the police. I imagine they will come to see me as well.

Thanks again for the agreement and support.

Peachy Fri 19-Jun-09 09:37:22

Well done for phonng, you did absolutely the right thing.

littlebrownmouse Fri 19-Jun-09 09:39:30

Police. Emmergency in my opinion.
1. She's being hit.
2. She's trying to control the car while being hit
3. The little boy is in the car while she's trying to control it etc etc.
4. The little boy is witnessing violence and is therefore a victim of it.

I rang police on 999 once after passing a house and seeing a woman having her head smashed against the wall by a man while the children cowered in the corner. They came and I walked passed the house a bit later and they were chatting to the kids in the garden and I could see mum in the bedroom with police officer. Child needs protection in my opinion, even if mum doesn't want police involved.

giraffesCantRunA10k Fri 19-Jun-09 09:40:02

You did the right thing

littlebrownmouse Fri 19-Jun-09 09:40:10

Well done!

glaskham Fri 19-Jun-09 09:41:18

well done- you defo did the right thing!!

emmabemmasmom Fri 19-Jun-09 09:42:13

It is from an upstairs window but the way our little culdesac is, they were only a few feet away not like a full yard away in the street if you know what I mean. I could see his mouth moving and see her jumping so I was pretty close.

I feel bad as the car is here so often I never take notice so when they asked what kind of car it was I had no idea. Also I was more shocked by what I had seen to even think to take notice. I can only hope they have it on record and I am sure they have his name too from the times they were here before.

I have no idea if social services are involved. I only know I have seen the police here quite a few time in the last few months and I have seen him arrested before. I have also seen the police search his car and I have seen his car windows smashed in one morning. Other than that I have no clue what goes on in her house.

I am still really upset. I guess I have done all I can at this point though so I can only pray for her and her boy and hope they are safe.

maria1665 Fri 19-Jun-09 09:43:57

Well done. You absolutely did the right thing. Please keep us updated re what the police do.

glaskham Fri 19-Jun-09 09:45:22

Also if he's able to hit her in braod daylight, what can he do to her behind closed doors?? Thats what would be my biggest worry... Hopefully the police can help her now.

emmabemmasmom Fri 19-Jun-09 09:46:48

Weird thing is this is a very quite and lovely family area. We all know eachother and look out for one another. Our kids play together and it is a great area. She moved in a few months ago and since then the police are never away it seems. We all talk about it as it is very odd for my street. I never saw something like this before though.

littlebrownmouse Well done you for calling too! I would have done the same. That sounded very serious. I have the local police number in my phone so I just called them. I am weird with that and have all sorts of emergency numbers in my phone...I guess for moments like this!

emmabemmasmom Fri 19-Jun-09 09:48:09

I should say, I have never seen something like this with them before. I have seen violence before and have even been subjected to it. Someone called the police for me once and am thankful they did. Hopefully she will be thankful too.

emmabemmasmom Fri 19-Jun-09 10:35:30

Update Police have just been. I told them what I had seen. I could not say 100% if I had seen actual contact but I told them that personally I was 100% sure that he hit her. Of course they wanted to know for sure. They managed to get in contact with her. She is at the hospital for an appointment. They said she was very cagey and asked for them to call her later to arrange a visit. They are now going to the hospital in case the man is with her and that is why she was not talking much. They did say that there is record that someone is not suppose to be at her address so they are hoping to get confirmation that it is this man and be able to take action. They did say though that is she denies he hit her or whatever then they can't really do anything. I hope this gives her the chance to say something and it is obvious that if this is the guy that should not be at her address then there have been problems before and she and her son are not safe.

Just wanted to let everyone know! And sorry for any mistakes...typing fast and one handed as I am BF lol

mistlethrush Fri 19-Jun-09 10:47:56

Well done! - and good that they are taking this so seriously (and so quickly in fact)

theDreadPirateRoberts Fri 19-Jun-09 10:49:50

Just another Well Done here - I hope she gets the help she needs.

RumourOfAHurricane Fri 19-Jun-09 10:57:32

Message withdrawn

missismac Fri 19-Jun-09 11:06:43

I'm really concerned for the little boy in this scenario. I wonder if you might put in a call to the social services? I know how difficult it is to 'get involved', and you might feel you should 'keep your nose out' as you say, but I think it would be good to feel that appropriate persons had this Mum & boy on their watch list. From what you say they may already be known to them - but you can't let this incident (which was, after all, in full public view) go unrecorded by them, and it's odds on that Mum wouldn't mention it to them.

maria1665 Fri 19-Jun-09 11:31:20

Agree with missismac advice re social services.

It may be worth checking with the police as to whether they themselves will inform social services of what happened. Some forces do, but some don't, and it is this type of failure to share information that has been highlighted by the recent dreadful cases in the news.

Really really well done for ringing - I remember when I did it my knees were literally knocking when I made the call.

VelvetCushions Fri 19-Jun-09 11:36:33

You did the right thing.

When I was a lot younger, I witnessed some abuse and really regret not phoning the police (I was 18 and a bit shocked)

BradfordMum Fri 19-Jun-09 11:41:11

Well done.
Too many people turn the other cheek these days but I appreciate it's a fine line between helping interferingring.
In my opinion, when a minor is involved, you HAVE to do something.
Once again, well done.
Sally x x

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