Keith and Jacquelyn Smith danced Friday night at the American Legion on Madison Street in Baltimore, where they had brought his daughter Shavon to celebrate her 28th birthday.
Hours later, about 12:30 a.m., the 52-year-old Harford County man found himself calling 911 and rushing Jacquelyn, 54, to the emergency room. She had been stabbed by a man through their rolled-down car window after giving money to a woman panhandling in the rain in East Baltimore, he said.
Jacquelyn Smith, an electrical engineer at Aberdeen Proving Ground, had her necklace and pocketbook snatched by the woman and the man, who approached under the guise of thanking her for giving the woman money, her husband said. She died two hours after they arrived at Johns Hopkins Hospital, he said.
Tis’ the Season. Love and charity should fill our hearts and at ;least for a little while, we give to those in need and substitute cynicism with love for others.
And predators know this. Use it. And in this case, a good-hearted woman paid the price with her life.
Some of us coming from other latitudes are immunized to this kind of ruse since it was a common happenstance in our countries of origin. Back in my youth, it was not uncommon to have your watch and neck jewelry snatched at a red light or during bad traffic jams. You either learned to do without or wear really cheap ornaments. By the way, you were lucky if your car came with Air Conditioner as factory standard, so it was a challenge to keep the windows up in the hot season.
Your car’s window is a security layer. Short of breaking it or threaten to do so with a gun, it will keep most criminals away from you or at least give you a chance to engage in a safety procedure. And as hard as it can be, do not let your good heart override your security. This couple used a baby (fake or not) to make Ms. Smith drop her barriers and the scum killed her. About the only thing I can think of is to call police and report that the mother and child are in weaving in and out of traffic and you fear for the safety of the baby. If in real need, maybe the cops will see they get sent to a shelter. If scum of the earth, maybe they get removed from circulation.
But sure as hell, Do Not Lower Your Windows. Charity begins at home with keeping yourself unhurt.