He Seemed So
Hello, this is the
Crimestoppers telephone helpline. How can I
I think the police
should know about my neighbour.
In what way?
I think he might be a
rapist or serial killer or terrorist or something
Whats made you
He just seems so
ordinary. I dont know him very well, but he
appears to be very nice. He always says a
friendly hello when I meet him in the
street. You wouldnt think there was
anything odd about him at all. Hes the very
last person youd suspect of any wrongdoing.
I agree that sounds a
bit worrying. Im glad you contacted us.
This kind of neighbour description has been
typical of some of our most dangerous and
notorious criminals. What else do you know about
I see his wife
sometimes. She seems pleasant enough. I think she
helps out at the local school. Do you think she
might be involved?
Its hard to say.
Shell probably never be prosecuted, but well
all suspect that she must have known something.
After all, those heinous crimes would have taken
place right under her nose and over a long period.
I think theyre
both involved in charity work.
Thats a bad
sign. Its a classic strategy to select
victims whilst allaying suspicion. He's not
involved with the Church, is he?
Yes, he preaches at
Oh God! This sounds
even more serious than I first feared.
Those who minister in
the Church tend to have their crimes go
undetected for much longer periods. Its
quite likely that hes been abusing
vulnerable members of his congregation for years
in addition to his other catalogue of terrifying
and horrific offences.
What are you going to
I think the police
will want to act quickly. What youve told
me already sounds pretty conclusive. Whats
his name and address?
Henry Smith of
fourteen Acacia Drive.
frighteningly nondescript name and address
once again typical of this kind of monster. He
drives a white Mondeo, doesnt he?
How did you know?
Have you ever known a
criminal in a Crimewatch reconstruction drive
Now you come to
Of course all the
offences he will have committed thirty years ago
- the worrying crimes which would have clearly
linked him to recent sickening and depraved acts
- will have gone unnoticed by police enquiries.
What will have gone
Typically, in cases
like this, there will have been a simple error by
the police that will have led them to overlook
key evidence and hence not make the vital
connections. I expect the Chief Constable will
have to resign again.
What shall I do now?
Nothing. The police
will pick him up today and release him due to
lack of evidence. He will commit one more crime
and then be arrested, tried in a blaze of
publicity and finally imprisoned. Dont
worry though, youll be perfectly safe. They
never harm the neighbours. In fact, youre
the first neighbour whos ever suspected