About that time I got a subpoena…

September 7, 2007 at 9:39 pm | Posted in annoyances, crazy people, fears, i can't believe that just happened, i win at life, mad mad world, the law, work | 3 Comments

So, about a year and a half ago when I worked at Old Job, I was present during an attempted bank robbery. I use the word present instead of the word involved because although I came within about three feet of the robber I didn’t actually know he was a robber until he ran out of the bank, broke through a set of locked glass doors, and sped off on his bicycle. Yes, his bicycle.

 What happened is this: it was very very close to quitting time, and I was trying to make the last ten minutes not stretch into an eternity by partaking in my favorite time killer: using the bathroom.  At this particular branch, the bathrooms were on one side of the lobby and our desks were on the other.  I was meandering my way across when all of the sudden a man darted past me, busted through the doors (which did not shatter, but flew apart and unlocked, knocking a co-worker to the ground as she was servicing the ATM), and off he went.  The whole thing lasted about 45 seconds. The funny thing is that this robber would have needed to stand on his head and/or swallow flaming swords to draw any more attention to himself.  Not only was he abnormally tall, thin, and fidgety, but he wearing a bright traffic-cone-orange hoodie and camouflage pants. On top of that he picked the busiest time of day to rob a bank and ended up standing in line for almost ten minutes, fidgeting the entire time. The teller he chose to rob was just finishing up with another customer and not ready to help him yet. As he tried to pass her the note, she (not realizing she was getting robbed) kept asking him to patiently hold on a moment until she could help him. When he threw the note in front of her she didn’t immediately compute what was happening, and he finally got spooked and ran away without getting a dime.  It was more a comedy of errors than a terrifying event.

Everyone was fine, although my co-worker who got knocked down was obviously a little shaken up. I was more pissed that I had to stay late to give a statement to the police about what I witnessed when I had been moments from walking out the door. After I gave my statement to the police I never heard another word about it. I didn’t even know that he had been caught and I didn’t know his name until I got a letter telling me I was to show up in court to testify as a witness. Testify? As a witness? I started picturing the trial in my head:

DA: “Can you please tell us what happened during on the day of the attempted robbery?”

Me: “Yes. I was trying to kill time by peeing, and as I was walking across the lobby a flash of orange and camo flew past me and into the doors.”

DA: “Is that flash of orange and camo present in court today?”

Me: “I assume it’s that guy (pointing to defendant) but I really can’t be positive. That was a year and a half ago and he was running really fast.”

My testimony would more than likely be worthless, and the whole process would probably take up the better half of my morning. Since I just started New Job a month ago, I would feel awkward asking for a half day or more off already. Plus, I couldn’t help but be paranoid about the whole deal, worrying that if I was involved in a trial that sent this guy to prison he would get his posse to come rough me up or firebomb my mailbox to keep me from testifying. Or what if he showed up in court with a homemade shank hidden in the soles of his shoes and tried to cut everyone that snitched. Aren’t I hopelessly dramatic?

My fears were short lived, because about two weeks after the first letter I received another one, this time telling me that the suspect had pleaded guilty and I was no longer required to schlep it up to Superior Court and sit in barely air-conditioned courtroom all morning until I may or may not have been required to testify. I was jubilant. Jubilant, I tell you!

My jubilance or jubilancy, or whatever the actual word for that state of being is was short lived, because when I came home from work yesterday there was a big blue subpoena taped to my freshly cleaned glass storm door. Not only did this subpoena server get his or her greasy mitts all over the glass, creating giant smear marks (which is my PET PEEVE!) but they also apparently got lazy and instead of actually serving me with the document they stuck a piece of masking tape to it an attached it to my door. I am no expert on subpoena serving, but from the way I understand it doesn’t it have to be handed to the person being served?  What if I didn’t even LIVE at that address anymore?  Then I would never have gotten the subpoena and the court system would think I was a deadbeat, and next thing I know I get a parking ticket and they’re handcuffing me for failure to appear.  Actually, I don’t know if it’s that serious. But what if?

Also, I really don’t need my neighbors knowing my business. Some of my neighbors are the type that will make a point to ask about certain packages we have delivered or plumbers and electricians that come to the house. I’m not saying they’re spying on us by any means, just that they have really keen eyesight and not much else to do. This particular subpoena had CRIMINAL CHARGES stamped on the front of it in big bold letters. What if my mailman saw that and thought I was the one being criminally charged? My mailman is cool peoples, I don’t want him to think I am a degenerate.

I’m not going to make a big deal out of the whole subpoena-on-the-door thing, because I am once again jubilant after confirming with the Prosecutor that the subpoena was issued prior to the guilty plea and I can just ignore it. It is currently hanging on my fridge so that Jeremy can look at it and say “YOU GOT SERVED!” twelve times a day. Ah, ain’t love grand?



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  1. I also thought they had to hand it to you in person. Hmmm. Well, sorry you ended up on that emotional rollercoaster for nothing, but glad it ended well so you didn’t have to go to court after all.

  2. I thought they had to personally hand it to you. Maybe the server knew the case was over and since it was not important anymore he just taped it to the door. I am sure these guys get paid by the hour anyway.

    If would have been interesting if you did go to court in your orange hair to match the robbers orange hoodie.

  3. I tagged you for another meme! This one should be quick and easy for you. Come on by when you get a chance!

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