On Saturday I had finished my eighth mimosa when I decided to move the party elsewhere. Driving down 3rd Street, because my head is on a swivel and I’m incredibly observant I noticed a Puerto Rican couple arguing. As the traffic moved forward the woman walked into the road with her hands up screaming for help. She asked the car three spots in front of me to help her. I rolled my window down and I could hear her tell the car in front of me that she was being held hostage and to save her. The car pulls off and she approaches my window. She is begging me to help her and the man she seems to be running from runs in the road screaming, “she’s my wife”. Which is an amazing phrase because it completely diffuses the situation. Even though I can see she has had water dumped all over her, she is crying and pleading for help the “wife” statement causes me to think, “oh, I’ve been there”.
I calmly ask her if she really needs a ride when the man runs up and grabs her, she screams and I hear a loud noise and something hits my car. A giant dude in the car behind me approaches yelling “YOU DON’T HIT GIRLS“, I open up my doors and I tell the girl “GET IN” the man/husband runs away. My car had been blocking mid day traffic so I take off to get the woman to safety.
“THANK YOU THANK YOU, you are an angel she cries. HE TOOK MY MONEY, MY LAST HUNDRED DOLLARS TO FEED MY BABIES”
This was the first strange thing she said. If she was being held hostage you would think finally being safe would be enough but she starts freaking out about this money. I tell her I will give her money. She said her name was Vanessa and that she met the man last night. He told her he loved her and she was meant for him and wouldn’t let her go home. Where do you live? I asked. She told me some intersection in the Valley but didn’t know the address. “He broke my phone, see?” She holds up a shitty Nextell with the battery cover missing. Does this guy know where you live, I asked? She said no. She tells me she is from the east coast and was here taking care of her senior citizen parents. How old are your parents?… 55 she says… (hmmmmm). I notice she has a tattoo of three dots in the shape of a triangle on her hand. I said “Are you Portuguese?. “No, I’m Mexican”. Oh, I thought that tattoo represents a Portuguese gang. Each dot represents the only three places gang members go, the hospital, prison, and the grave. Then she admitted she knew then man from back in New York. I asked how she got to where I picked her up, she told me he took her to the Beverly Center for lunch. I asked why she didn’t run away then. She responded he wouldn’t let me. I told her we are going to call the police and she didn’t seem interested. She said they won’t do anything, I said I saw him hit you. But wait… did I see him hit her?
Then she got on the phone, (which she said was broken) and started speaking a language that I didn’t recognize, but clearly wasn’t Spanish. I wish I had an app like Shazzam for languages. Or maybe called Ben Hundreds cuz I’m pretty sure he speaks Farsi. I started to think about what I actually know as the truth and what I saw, I asked her if he hit her and she said no. She said he took her money out of her ill fitting bra which she had kept hidden from him all night but he knew she had. She said he had thrown a cup of water on her at Burger King and that’s why she ran into the street. To normal white people a water dousing can be a terrifying event. But to a junkie scam artist it’s just another trick to get you to fall for their gypsy mind tricks. She acted like she was crying, but looking close I couldn’t see any tears. Plus being covered in water tears are hard to find.
This scam is incredible. If you don’t pick up the girl you are a horrible person. If you do, you think you are a hero. But when you figure it out it’s very confusing and pathetic. My first reason for getting involved was thinking about the people on the flights during 9-11. No one wants to get involved in other peoples drama. I was on my way to 9 more Hendrick and tonics at the Roosevelt when I thought, what if this is an escaped sex slave, and if I don’t save her will she die? In the 25 minutes we shared nothing she said was the truth. I stopped talking because I was embarrassed that she couldn’t even remember her lies. Approaching the intersection in the valley she asked to be dropped off we stopped in front of a house. She asked me for money and I thought ( I just fucking saved you what do you need $100 for) so I told her I only had $50 and she freaked out crying.. pleading and begging.. “No No No I need more.. I ave to feed my babies… my four babies… he stole from me…” I gave her another $25 and said it was all I had. She thanked me and left… and walked down a driveway on the phone… then turned around and walked out of the driveway… and it wasn’t until I posted this photo that I noticed that the house was condemned.
Kinda sucks… because the next time I see a domestic dispute I most likely won’t get involved. Maybe this is more of a warning to others. If you see this racially ambiguous woman (Vanessa), run into the road with water on her, you should feel confident not to get involved. Or, you can be like me and pay $75 for a crazy story to tell.