Friday, July 11, 2008

At a Loss for Words


How is this for something lovely to come home from vacation to?

Back-story: My dad became a police officer when my mother discovered that she was pregnant with me, when he had been there 25 years he took early retirement and took a job as the head of the 911 dispatch center he has been there about 8 years. In a nutshell, he knows almost everyone in Roanoke and does know everyone in local law enforcement and is pretty well respected.

My dad called me to try to get a hold of my mom. He said that he needed to talk to her about my brother, Tattoo. I pressed him for details as my interest was peaked and the whole story came out…

Dad was approached by a cop he is friends with who told him that he (the cop) had arrested my brother. This was a few weeks ago, and Tattoo was pulled over, his car searched and the police found quite a bit of pot, enough that he is facing a charge of possession with intent to distribute - a charge that could send him to jail for 1-5 years! Now, Tattoo is claiming that they pulled him over for a bogus reason and they searched his car illegally and he has a lawyer, but he is not denying the charge of distribution, at least not to dad. The police want him to turns states, but he says that he won't do that.

They have not formally charged him yet. Dad thinks that the police are working to build the case and will do one of those big "drug busts" where the media gets involved. They will say that the police seized so many pounds of drugs and indicted like 47 people or something. Dad also believes that someone turned him in, and that the police have probably been watching him for a while now, waiting to bust him.

I have not called Tattoo about this, because… I don't really know why. He has had opportunities to tell us, dad had to find out from a cop, can you imagine the embarrassment and guilt that dad is feeling? He says that Tattoo was still so young when he and my mom split and that dad was not a very good father to Tattoo and he feels like this is his fault.

Mom feels like this is her fault because she was busy getting divorced and trying to make a living to be a very good mom to Tattoo, then she got sick and relied on him too much.

Whenever I have a real talk with my brother (which is very rare), I am happy to see that he seems to have his head on straight, pays his bills on time, has a great work ethic, has smart opinions on world events and social issues. I guess he had me completely fooled! He is a drug dealer? I can't even deal with that concept in my head. I want to call him, but what do I say? Listen to him tell me all the reasons that he should not have gotten caught, or how pot should be legal anyway? I thought dealers were supposed to be rich - why did I need to pay all those doctor bills from the motorcycle accident?

I worry about things like what might happen to him if he gets into trouble with the wrong people, or what could happen to him in jail - I guess I watch too many movies, but that is all I keep thinking about. He is my baby brother and no matter what he has done, or will do to hurt me or disappoint me, I love him and I don't want to see him hurting.

I need another vacation...