Perp vs privacy

I’m in a bit of a quandary right now: doing the right thing vs. maintaining my privacy.

Despite spending a good chunk of my daily hours on Facebook, sending out the occasional Twitter message, and having an on-again/off-again blog of what goes on in my life, there’s very little of my for-real life bits that make it up here.

Yes, something teary-eyed occasionally peeps up on one of the mediums. But by and large, you’re seeing a filtered representation of my everyday life.

For the past nine months I’ve been waiting for my then-boyfriend to go to jail. He’s been arrested multiple times in multiple cities for the same crime over and over again. I understand that the criminal justice system takes time in ensuring that they have sufficient evidence, everybody’s rights are protected, and that something suitable comes from the end result.

I’m just frustrated.

The thing is, while he’s out on bail on his charges, he’s continuing to do what he’s currently in trouble for. Time and time again, he’s committing these crimes. He goes from county to county, racking up the damages. He’s clearly not going to stop.

I feel the need to warn others.

But in doing so, my name gets attached to this mess. With that comes various issues: retaliation via the legal system, retaliation via force, and the simple matter of my personal business becoming public knowledge.

I’ve talked with a lawyer, and the legal ramifications of posting something with the word allegedly all over it are essentially nil. I have the truth on my side, proof of all points I bring up, and witnesses galore who can back up everything I’m saying.

Add to it that I’m pretty sure my head would explode from the rage of a thousand fiery suns if he tried to turn this around on me. It’s not really a stressor I want.

Although he’s not big on accepting responsibility for, well, anything, I have to remember that plaintiffs can’t take the fifth. Legally he has to answer anything I ask. There’s so much more beyond the crimes he’s been arrested for, things I keep quiet on unless you’re in my innermost circle. I know he’d lie if ever seated for a deposition (since breaking the law clearly doesn’t bother him). However, being asked about all of these topics would be enough to make anyone of sound mind hesitate to press charges when he or she knows the claims are baseless.

My second major consideration is fear of retaliation — whether physical or financial. He’s got enough information to pull my credit report, do some damage there, and get my current address in the process.

I notified the credit bureaus upon my move-out and have all notifications and alerts turned on, but I still don’t trust that it’s enough to protect my financial holdings.

And although I’m fairly certain that my name doesn’t come across his mind at all these days, but I’m still afraid about 2% of the time that he’s going to snap, look my info up, and come looking for me. No social networking sites list my actual location, all permissions are set to secure levels, and I regularly monitor Google to make sure nothing’s up there. (I have a few outstanding requests with sitemasters right now asking for resolution on my information being displayed in search engines.)

If I posted the full story with a full list of the crimes I’m aware of, that 2% would increase exponentially. I recognize that my apartment’s gate can be circumvented with enough patience, and my dead-bolted door can be overcome with enough force. And, well, my head isn’t strong enough to withstand blunt forces, knifings, bullets, or any other creative weaponry that might be used.

Add to it that I will soon have a 225-pound muscle-y man living in my house. I’m positive that he can defend himself mano y mano, but I don’t like his odds with any handicap given to the perp. If anything ever happened to my brother, that would be the end of me — especially if from the hands of someone gunning for my face.

The final issue that’s weighing on me is my loss of privacy. I can point to specifics on my decision to be involved with him. I can defend why I’d choose to move back to Chicago. There’s nobody who can look at his crimes against me and say that I overacted in my filing police charges and moving out immediately. However, do I really want the world to know the specifics of my situation?

This is exactly why superheroes have secret identities. Unfortunately, I don’t have that luxury.


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