My mom owns her own business and works extremely hard. This means she spends many late nights sitting on the living room floor with her work sprawled out around her.
One night back in 2003 she had her typical routine going, sorting through paperwork and making piles. It was late, close to midnight on a Wednesday, so when the phone rang she was a bit surprised. My dad worked 3rd shift at a factory so she assumed it was him. When she answered the phone their was no reply, just lots of heavy breathing. Admittedly creeped out she hung up and called my dad. He told her he hadn’t called and she left it at that.
Keep in mind this was almost 15 years ago and we lived in a small town with practically no crime. We never locked our doors and were never scared of dangerous people.
But the phone calls kept coming. Every night, multiple times a night. And the person on the other end started talking.
He started by saying hello diane..you’re so beautiful..I’d love to meet you..and things quickly escalated into him going into graphic detail of how he wanted to rape and strangle her. Of course she stopped answering the phone, and she informed the police. But nothing was ever done and the phone would continue to ring.
My parents weren’t in the situation where my dad could stay home from work, and my mom truly believed the calls were just empty threats so things continued on.
Until one night he got brave. My mom was sitting on the floor in front of our huge mirrored cabinet with all her work around her when the phone rang. She ignored it as usual. She was concentrating hard on a piece of paper in front of her when a glimmer of light in the mirror caught her eye. She looked up to see a pair of eyeglasses peering at her in the reflection. She spun around to face the front door which her back had been turned to and a man was standing there staring at her.
She said they both just stared at each other for what felt like forever until she saw the door knob turn. She started screaming and the man quickly ran away. In light of the phone calls my parents had started locking all the doors, which was a totally foreign concept to our household. My older brother who was about 17 at the time and was aware of the phone calls came running down the stairs with a baseball bat, but the man was long gone.
When the police came they scoured our property and came across close to 200 cigarette butts right underneath our living room windows, hidden behind bushes. He had been watching her for weeks.
The police also happened to find a bike tire trail coming from the windows and going down the sidewalk. They took the cigarette butts and did DNA testing on them and were able to match them to a convicted rapist who lived down the street from us.
Robert Hamm was arrested while riding his bike. He went to prison for menacing and attempt to commit a crime. He had many priors so we assumed he would be locked up for quite some time. The reason I’m telling this story is because he was released from prison earlier this year.